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On The Merits

English, Financial News, 1 season, 189 episodes, 2 days, 10 hours, 33 minutes
About
The Big Law Business podcast covers the legal industry and the business of law, and is hosted by Josh Block.
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Programming Note & UnCommon Law Episode: AI Trained on Famous Authors’ Copyrighted Work. They Want Revenge – Part 1

On the Merits is on hiatus for a bit while we create some great new episodes for you. Until then, we're pleased to offer a special presentation of our ABA Silver Gavel award-winning series, UnCommon Law. Generative AI tools are already promising to change the world. Systems like OpenAI's ChatGPT can answer complex questions, write poems and code, and even mimic famous authors with uncanny accuracy. But in using copyrighted materials to train these powerful AI products, are AI companies infringing the rights of untold creators? This season on UnCommon Law, we'll explore the intersection between artificial intelligence and the law. Episode one examines how large language models actually ingest and learn from billions of online data points, including copyrighted works. And we explore the lawsuits filed by creators who claim their copyrights were exploited without permission to feed the data-hungry algorithms powering tools like ChatGPT. If you like this episode and want to hear part 2, visit news.bloomberglaw.com/podcasts, or search for UnCommon Law in your podcast app. Guests: Matthew Butterick, founder at Butterick Law, and co-counsel with the Joseph Saveri Law Firm on class-action lawsuits against OpenAI and others Isaiah Poritz, technology reporter for Bloomberg Law James Grimmelmann, professor of digital and information law at Cornell Tech and Cornell Law School
5/3/202427 minutes, 41 seconds
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California's New Mental Health Court Starting Off Slow

When California's new mental health courts were getting started, the debate centered on whether they had too much power–or too little. Now, roughly six months in, the state is discovering a new flaw: too few people are using them. On this episode of our podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Law reporter Maia Spoto talks about why California's Community Assistance, Recovery, and Empowerment, or CARE, Courts, have had such an underwhelming start. Also, what this means for the state's governor, Gavin Newsom (D), who invested a large amount of political capital into them. We also hear from one of the judges helping to set up a CARE Court in Orange County, who talks about the large amount of manpower needed to adjudicate these special types of cases. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
4/30/202414 minutes, 57 seconds
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Weed Testing for Workers May Not Be Worth It Anymore

Marijuana is now legal in about half of the states, but still maintains its illegal status at the federal level. What does this mean for an employer who wants to, or has to, administer drug tests for its employees? We tackle that question on our podcast, On The Merits, with Sean Mack, a partner and co-chair of the cannabis and hemp law practice at the New Jersey firm Pashman Stein. Mack says testing employees for marijuana–or even firing them for testing positive–is now so fraught with employment law issues that it may no longer be worth the hassle. Mack also talks about a case out of Ohio, Fisher v. Airgas, in which an employee who was fired for a false positive marijuana test result won at the federal appellate level. Mack says it's a sign that, in employment law cases, even federal judges are able to look beyond pot's controlled substance status. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
4/23/20248 minutes, 47 seconds
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DOJ Prosecutor Wants to Make Antitrust Relatable

Hetal Doshi, the top antitrust litigator at the Department of Justice, says she tries to make the cases her team pursues easy for the average person to understand. "If we are litigating cases inside an echo chamber, or like in a very narrow, technocratic way that only other lawyers can understand, then we're failing to do our jobs," Doshi says on this episode of our podcast, On The Merits. Doshi spoke to reporters Leah Nylen and Danielle Kaye about how this philosophy played into recent cases that blocked mergers in the airline and publishing industries. Doshi also talks about the idea that antitrust laws are meant to protect not only consumers from higher prices, but also to protect workers from lower wages. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
4/18/202412 minutes, 5 seconds
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Who's to Blame for Commerce Department Billing Mess?

The Commerce Department's disastrous rollout of a new payment system left some National Weather Service employees on the hook for their own business expenses, and even led utility companies to shut off power to some critical weather systems due to unpaid bills. Bloomberg Government reporter Jack Fitzpatrick found that even now, months after this system went online, the Department is still working through a backlog of unpaid invoices. And despite a report from its Inspector General, it's still not clear what exactly went wrong and who at the Department is to blame. On this episode of our podcast, On The Merits, Fitzpatrick explains what happens when a federal agency can't pay its bills on time and what might happen when the Department expands this troubled payment system in the years to come. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
4/9/202417 minutes, 49 seconds
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Why Lawsuits Against Campus Antisemitism May Succeed

Harvard, NYU, and several other elite universities have been hit with civil rights lawsuits from students who say the schools allow, or at least don't counter, a culture on campus of pervasive antisemitism. Though these suits largely stem from an increase in antisemitic incidents since Oct. 7 and the start of the Israel-Hamas conflict, attorneys say the groundwork for them was laid with an executive order back in 2019. That's when the Trump administration adopted a newer, more broad definition of antisemitism for civil rights claims under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. On today's episode of our podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg News reporter David Voreacos talks about this litigation and why the 2019 policy change could pose problems for the universities facing the lawsuits. We also hear from two attorneys representing Jewish students in these suits and they explain why they believe universities should be held accountable for the actions of their students and faculty. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
4/5/202416 minutes, 44 seconds
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Russian Bankruptcy Sheds Light on Litigation Finance

It's becoming more common for investors to chip in money for a lawsuit in exchange for a share of any payout a party wins, a practice known as litigation finance. But, as a recent Bloomberg Law investigation found, the identities of these litigation funders is often shrouded in mystery—and can have national security implications. Bloomberg Law reporters John Holland and Emily R. Siegel learned about a Russian company with close ties to Vladimir Putin that financed the creditors in US and UK bankruptcy proceedings—even after several of its founders were sanctioned due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Holland and Siegel join our podcast, On The Merits, to explain why attorneys say this was an attempt to use litigation finance to evade international sanctions, and whether it will lead to new rules on this practice. They also talk about how the Russian company came within hours of receiving a more than $6 million payout before a bankruptcy judge put a stop to it. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
4/2/202416 minutes, 27 seconds
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California Fights to Keep Insurers Despite Fire Risk

Insurance companies like The Allstate Corp. and State Farm have experienced one too many devastating wildfire seasons in California. Many are looking to exit the market in impacted communities, but a powerful state lawmaker is trying to keep them. Mike McGuire is a Democrat representing a Northern California district directly affected by wildfires, and he just became the top ranking member of the California State Senate. Many of his constituents say they've gotten non-renewal notices or steep rate hikes. He wants to require insurers to issue policies to property owners who take wildfire mitigation measures. On this episode of On The Merits, our California correspondent Andrew Oxford tells us why insurers no longer want to cover climate-vulnerable areas and what politicians like McGuire can do about it. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
3/26/202416 minutes, 59 seconds
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Why Are Lawyers Still Making Bad AI Mistakes?

Generative AI has the potential to transform the legal profession, and the guest on today's episode of our podcast, On The Merits, believes it will. But the tech also has led some lawyers to make embarrassing and costly mistakes. Lawyers have filed briefs in court that contain citations fabricated by AI tools. And a law firm in New York recently got a dressing down from a judge for using AI to estimate the fees it was entitled to. Katherine Forrest, a former federal judge and current partner at the firm Paul Weiss, talks with Bloomberg Law reporter Isabel Gottlieb about why AI isn't appropriate to use in many legal settings—at least not yet. Forrest also goes into some of the useful ways lawyers can take advantage of AI technology right now. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
3/21/202419 minutes, 23 seconds
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Law Firms Need to Be Aware of Neurodivergence Trend

A quarter of law students surveyed by Bloomberg Law late last year said they self-identify as neurodivergent, an umbrella term for people with ADHD, autism, or another condition that causes their brains to function differently than that of the average person. But the same survey found that more than three times fewer working attorneys identify as neurodivergent. Which means, as more of this upcoming cohort of lawyers enters the workforce, firms may need to change their policies to accommodate them—or, at the very least, to avoid being hit with disability discrimination complaints. Bloomberg Law analyst Jessica Blaemire analyzed the survey data, and also looked at federal data on discrimination complaints specifically related to neurodivergence. She joins our podcast, On The Merits, to talk about what these numbers mean and about what firms can do to make their workplaces more welcoming. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
3/19/202412 minutes, 15 seconds
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How a Rare Toad Species Stopped a Clean Energy Project

In a remote part of Nevada, an energy company is trying to build a climate-friendly power plant—but the plant is being blocked by conservationists and a decades old environmental law. A geothermal plant built atop desert hot springs sits half-completed after the discovery of a new toad species in the area, and an environmental review required by the National Environmental Policy Act, or NEPA. Conservation groups are suing, arguing the plant could drive the toad to extinction. But that seemingly puts them at odds with clean energy advocates in the fight against climate change. Bloomberg Law's Daniel Moore and Andrew Satter visited the site and join our podcast, On The Merits. They discuss the plant, the toad, NEPA, and why these "green-on-green" fights could become common as renewable energy projects expand. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
3/12/202416 minutes, 52 seconds
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IVF Access Still in Spotlight Despite New Alabama Law

A ruling last month from the Alabama Supreme Court declaring frozen embryos to be legally equivalent to children scared many would-be parents in and out of the state. Late Wednesday night, the state legislature there passed a law meant to ease the worries of both patients receiving in-vitro fertilization services and the doctors who provide those services. But, as Bloomberg Government reporter Alex Ruoff explains in this episode of our podcast, On The Merits, the new law doesn't actually overturn the ruling but instead enacts a narrow liability shield for the reproductive health care field. That has many worrying that access to IVF in Alabama will still be restricted, he says, and looking to Congress for nationwide clarity. Ruoff is joined by Bloomberg Law reporter Celine Castronuovo, who explains the legal minefield now facing IVF doctors and patients, and also why there's little stopping judges in many other states from issuing similar rulings. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
3/7/202418 minutes
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Too Fast, Too Soon: The Tale of a SPAC Gone Wrong

During the pandemic, Special Purpose Acquisition Companies, or SPACs, were all the rage in the financial markets. They were seen as a faster, easier way to go public that bypasses the laborious process of a typical IPO. But now that the SPAC boom has gone bust, it's clear that some of the companies that did this weren't ready for the scrutiny that comes with being publicly listed. Bloomberg Tax & Accounting reporter Nicola M. White looked into one of these companies, Lottery.com. What she found was a head-spinning story of financial mismanagement that involved an exiled Russian businessman, an ill-timed Monaco yacht party, and a very large loan from a Southern California pastor. On this episode of our podcast, On The Merits, Nicola unpacks how things went so wrong for Lottery.com and how damaging it can be for a company to go public before it's ready. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
3/5/202418 minutes, 27 seconds
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NCAA Goes to Congress to Snap Its Legal Losing Streak

Since a landmark Supreme Court decision against it three years ago, the NCAA has suffered a string of legal losses in its effort to block changes to how, and whether, its athletes are compensated. Now, it's trying to turn this trend around by moving the fight from the courthouse to Capitol Hill. The NCAA has at least two allies in Congress, Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W. Va.) and Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.). The pair have introduced legislation that would roll back many of the NCAA's recent adverse court decisions. In the meantime, the setbacks for the NCAA keep coming. A court decision last week forced it to allow licensing deals for recruits, and next week Dartmouth College athletes will vote on whether to unionize. On this episode of our podcast, Bloomberg Law reporters Diego Areas Munhoz, Katie Arcieri, and Parker Purifoy join us to talk about what type of legal problems the NCAA is having, what to expect from the upcoming union vote at Dartmouth, and what's happening in Congress. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
2/27/202420 minutes, 3 seconds
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Toxic Politics Makes White Collar Defense Work Harder

Being a white collar defense lawyer requires a special type of soft skill: the ability to effectively counsel a titan of industry more accustomed to giving orders, not taking them. But the guests on today's episode of our podcast, On The Merits, say this type of work has gotten a little harder because many white collar clients now believe the government agencies prosecuting them are acting in bad faith. J. Nicholas Bunch and Kit Addleman, two defense attorneys with the firm Haynes Boone, discuss how the country's contentious political climate is shaping this mindset and how to overcome it to secure the best outcome for your client—in some instances, despite themselves. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
2/22/202419 minutes, 17 seconds
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Can't Afford a Lawyer? AI Might Be the Solution

The cost of an attorney is far out of reach for many middle- and low-income Americans. This has serious negative consequences on both society and the rule of law, according to Ray Brescia, a professor at Albany Law School and author of a new book about the future of the legal profession. Increasing the supply of attorneys is one potential solution. But Brescia says another is to turn the legal profession into a commodity with the help of technology—specifically, artificial intelligence. In this episode of our news podcast, On The Merits, Brescia talks about the ways that AI and other technology broaden the public's access to justice, while also potentially disrupting the legal industry itself. Brescia discusses these issues and more in his new book, "Lawyer Nation: The Past, Present, and Future of the American Legal Profession." Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
2/20/202418 minutes, 41 seconds
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Big Law Tilts Liberal—But How Much Does It Matter?

Many have long suspected that the legal profession, and so-called "Big Law" in particular, has a liberal lean. A new study looking at Supreme Court amicus briefs supports this suspicion with some of the strongest empirical evidence yet. The study found that firms overwhelmingly choose liberal clients instead of conservative clients when working on pro bono cases before SCOTUS. Legal journalist and Bloomberg Law columnist David Lat says this finding isn't surprising, but what's interesting is thinking about why this is and what, if anything, firms should do about it. Lat joins our podcast, On The Merits, to talk about ideological diversity in the legal industry and why even Jones Day, one of the most conservative firms in the country, files lots of briefs on behalf of liberal clients. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
2/13/202415 minutes, 8 seconds
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Musk Can Fume, But He Probably Can't Leave Delaware

Elon Musk was unhappy, to put it mildly, with the ruling last week from a Delaware court that invalidated a $55.8 billion pay package he received from Tesla, his electric car company. Shortly afterward, he threatened to move Tesla's incorporation out of Delaware to a less shareholder-friendly state. But, as we discuss in this episode of our news podcast, On The Merits, doing so will likely just land Musk back in the same Delaware court that's the target of his current ire. Bloomberg Law reporters Mike Leonard and Jennifer Kay explain why this court voided Musk's massive pay package, and why the things about Delaware that aggravate him are also what make it the corporate home for nearly every public company in America. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
2/8/202417 minutes, 18 seconds
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Races to Watch As 2024 Congressional Primaries Begin

November's general election is still nine months away, but the preliminary battles between Republicans and Democrats that will shape this year's Congressional races are about to begin. States will begin to hold congressional primaries starting in early March. And special elections will continue to play out throughout the year, including next week's contest to replace disgraced former Rep. George Santos (R-NY). Bloomberg Government's Greg Giroux joins us on this episode of our podcast, On The Merits, to talk about which races to watch in the months ahead, why retaining the Senate will be difficult for Democrats, and why neither party has the upper hand in the House. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
2/6/202418 minutes, 33 seconds
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Legal Malpractice Suits on the Rise, Led by Musk, 3M

The legal industry used to have a stigma against attorneys representing legal malpractice clients who are suing other attorneys. But that stigma, if it still exists, has definitely faded. Data from legal malpractice insurers shows that the dollar amount of these suits has ballooned in recent years. That includes one of the most high profile suits: Elon Musk's claim against the mega-firm Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz disputing $90 million in fees for work on his Twitter purchase. On this episode of our news podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Law reporter Tatyana Monnay talks about how firms handle legal malpractice suits, why they're more common in bad economic times, and how insurance plays into all of this. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
1/30/202413 minutes, 21 seconds
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AI Panic or Real Threat? Campaign Ads and New Tech

The Republican National Committee's release of an AI-generated ad last year turned a lot of heads among professional campaigners, and it led some of them to say this new tech has no place in political races. But is this stance sensible, or is it another instance of "AI panic" sweeping the culture? Jessica Furst Johnson, an election law attorney with the firm Holtzman Vogel who's worked in Republican politics for years, thinks it's closer to the latter. Johnson joins our podcast, On The Merits, to talk about how AI, when used properly, could be an effective—not to mention cost-saving—tool for cash-strapped campaigns. She also discusses how efforts to outright ban the technology from elections could run afoul of candidates' First Amendment rights. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
1/25/202417 minutes, 49 seconds
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Despite Law, Many Civil Rights Killings Stay Unsolved

John Lewis, the late Congressman and civil rights hero, authored a law in 2007 that tasked the Justice Department with reopening and reinvestigating racially-motivated killings from the Civil Rights era. More than 15 years later, the Justice Department has failed to bring charges in nearly all of the cold cases it has reopened. On our weekly podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Law reporter Ronnie Greene talks about why the DOJ has had such little success prosecuting these cases. Moreover, he says, civil rights advocates worry the Justice Department's lack of results may cause Congress to lose patience with the program and defund it. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
1/23/202414 minutes, 38 seconds
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Giuliani, Alex Jones and the Pipeline Into Bankruptcy

Rudy Giuliani and Alex Jones are two high profile examples of instances where losing a defamation case at trial leads a defendant directly into bankruptcy. Christopher Hampson, a law professor at the University of Florida, calls this the "defamation-to-bankruptcy pipeline." However, election-denying former mayors and conspiracy-peddling shock jocks aren't the only ones who might find themselves sucked in. Hampson says damages in defamation cases are becoming increasingly enormous because of the ability of falsehoods to spread online. Additionally, he says bankruptcy filers might not be able to shed their debts if they go to trial and lose in a defamation case. On this episode of our podcast, On The Merits, Hampson talks about the implications of this pipeline on bankruptcy law and on the freedom of speech. If defeat in a defamation case means huge debts that will follow you for the rest of your life, can a defendant afford not to settle? Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
1/16/202416 minutes, 26 seconds
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More Time in the Office Might Mean Less Diversity

Within the legal industry and beyond, many companies are reining in the flexible work policies they implemented during the pandemic. Though this may be beneficial for these companies, Bloomberg Law survey data shows that it's not what many attorneys want—especially female and minority attorneys. More than 90% of female attorneys who responded to Bloomberg Law's latest Workload and Hours Survey said they want to be able to work remotely at least part of the week, compared with just three quarters of male respondents. Additionally, significantly more women and minority attorneys told Bloomberg Law that, in 2024, they're either open to job offers or are actively looking for a new position. Bloomberg Law analyst Jessica R. Blaemire, who crunched the data from this survey, joins the latest episode of our podcast, On The Merits, to discuss what this means and what effect this could have on the legal industry. She says more restrictive remote work policies, coupled with fallout from the recent Supreme Court ruling on affirmative action, could lead to serious backsliding on diversity goals at many law firms. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
1/11/202411 minutes, 33 seconds
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'Chapter 22': Why Some Companies Are Filing for Bankruptcy Twice

Bankruptcy is not something a company wants to go through once, let alone twice. And yet, 2023 saw an uptick in so-called "Chapter 22s"—companies that filed for Chapter 11 a second time. Some repeat filings were due to worse than anticipated business conditions, while two others were due to a court judgment that remained in place after the first bankruptcy. Some bankruptcy attorneys say that, regardless of the reason, if a company files a second time, something had to have gone wrong with the first bankruptcy proceeding. On today's On The Merits, Bloomberg Law reporter James Nani joins us to talk about what's driving these "Chapter 22s."  Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
1/10/202412 minutes, 37 seconds
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Capitol Riot Still Affecting Lives and Legislation

The January 6, 2021, riot on Capitol Hill was a traumatic event for everyone there, from staffers to dining hall servers, to elected officials themselves. But the ramifications from that day are still reverberating through the halls of Congress and impacting how the body operates. New research shows that Republicans who voted to overturn the 2020 presidential election have since had significantly fewer Democratic co-sponsors for their bills, even for minor, non-controversial legislation. On this episode of our news podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Government's Jonathan Tamari talks about how the fallout from January 6 has melded the personal and the political at the Capitol. He also talks about his exclusive interview with House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) and how Jeffries might fare if he becomes Speaker of the House next year. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
1/2/202420 minutes, 16 seconds
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Threats Increase, But System to Protect Judges Falters

Data obtained and analyzed by Bloomberg Law show that federal judges and their families are facing an increasing number of violent threats. But the federal agency charged with keeping judges safe doesn't have the tools it needs to face this growing problem. The US Marshals Service has an outdated system for collecting and tracking threats against judges, according to former Marshals Service employees. This makes it harder than it should be to prevent attacks. Lydia Wheeler and Gary Harki, a reporter and editor at Bloomberg Law, respectively, did a deep dive into this problem and into Congress's failure to allocate funding to upgrade the system. They join our weekly podcast, On The Merits, to discuss the effect this is having on judges and why many are being told to take their personal security into their own hands. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
12/12/202318 minutes, 21 seconds
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Judge's Mental Health Leave Sets Example for Legal Biz

In the legal profession, admitting one's own cognitive or mental weakness is a huge taboo. That made it all the more remarkable when Richard Bernstein, a sitting Michigan Supreme Court Justice, announced earlier this year that he was temporarily stepping down to seek treatment for depression. Bernstein was already an extraordinary jurist. He was born fully blind, but overcame his disability to not only graduate from law school but go on to be elected a judge. But stepping away from the bench and publicly admitting he needed treatment might have been the most difficult obstacle he has had to overcome in his career. Bloomberg Law reporter Alex Ebert spoke to Bernstein about his decision and about what this could mean for his future. Ebert joins our weekly news podcast, On The Merits, to talk about Bernstein and about why the legal profession lags behind the rest of society in accepting mental health struggles. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
12/5/202316 minutes, 10 seconds
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The Untold Story of When "Shoeless" Joe Sued His Team

The story of baseball's Black Sox scandal, when a group of ballplayers conspired with gamblers to throw the 1919 World Series, has been the subject of countless books and articles—not to mention at least two Hollywood movies. But what's now largely forgotten is a subsequent civil trial when one of those ballplayers, the famed "Shoeless" Joe Jackson, dragged his former team to court. However, that trial is forgotten no more with the recent publication of the unabridged court transcripts, once believed to be lost to time. The transcripts, edited by historians Jacob Pomrenke and David Fletcher, show how Jackson sued the Chicago White Sox for back pay and actually won in front of a jury, only to have the judge hearing the case nullify the verdict and then convict Jackson of perjury. Pomrenke and Fletcher join this episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, to talk about why Jackson went to court, how the trial went so wrong for him, and how they came across the long-lost transcripts. They also talk about the relevance of the Black Sox scandal today, when sports gambling is more pervasive than it's ever been. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
11/28/202316 minutes, 51 seconds
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Climate Change Fuels Texas Boom Towns' Water Worries

Every new person who moves to Texas—and there are a lot of them—increases demand in the state for water. But Texas' supply of water isn't just failing to keep up with demand, it's actually going down. Climate change-driven droughts are lasting longer, and that's especially painful in Central Texas where both the Austin and San Antonio metro areas are growing at astonishing rates. Earlier this month, Texas voters approved a new $1 billion water infrastructure fund—but even this may only forestall a time when officials are forced to put a halt to new development in the region. On this episode of our weekly news podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Law reporter Bobby Magill walks us through some of the solutions policymakers are considering to try to reconcile the supply of, and demand for, water in fast-growing parts of the country. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
11/21/202314 minutes, 29 seconds
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Feral Hogs Another Flashpoint in Partisan Funding Wars

For farmers in the South, feral hogs are a constant threat to their crops and, thus, their livelihoods. But with the expiration of a federal pilot program to eradicate them, the feral hog invasion has become another skirmish in the broad fiscal battles dominating Washington. One problem: there's not an agreement on what role the federal government should play in solving the invasive hog problem. And that disagreement could have serious impacts as Congress gears up to debate several major agricultural funding bills in the coming months. On this episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Government reporter Jack Fitzpatrick explains why invasive feral hogs are such a difficult problem to solve, and outlines the pros and cons of the dueling solutions to eradicate the boars: a government-led campaign or a market-oriented solution. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
11/14/202317 minutes, 17 seconds
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Bankman-Fried's Legal Woes Don't End With a Verdict

Former crypto titan Sam Bankman-Fried had a bad day on Nov. 2, as he was found guilty on all seven charges of fraud and conspiracy. But, according to Bloomberg Law reporters Matthew Bultman and Daphne Zhang, he can probably expect more bad days to come. Bankman-Fried will face sentencing early next year, where, Bultman reports, former federal prosecutors predict he could receive at least 20 years in prison. Another issue he could face is an inability to pay his attorneys. Zhang reports that Bankman-Fried recently dropped a suit against an insurer of his former crypto trading firm, FTX, to force it to pay his legal costs. Zhang and Bultman join today's episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, to discuss what's on the horizon for Bankman-Fried and whether his case will make insurers think differently about underwriting risky companies. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
11/7/202317 minutes, 25 seconds
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With Billions at Stake, Bogus Camp Lejeune Leads Rise

Finding clients is one of the biggest challenges facing mass tort lawyers. But that task has gotten even more challenging for lawyers working on Camp Lejeune, which could end up being one of the largest-ever mass tort cases. Many of these attorneys have been paying firms for the names of people who've been exposed to toxic water at the military base and may be entitled to a government payout. However, in some cases the attorneys later discover that the names and details in the leads are totally fabricated, according to recent reporting from Bloomberg Law. At best, this adds to lawyers' workloads as they have to weed out the real leads from the fake. At worst, it can get the lawyers in serious trouble if they don't realize their clients' story is fake until too late. On this episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, reporters Kaustuv Basu and Emily R. Siegel explain how these lead generating scams work and why they're bad news not just for attorneys but also for real Camp Lejeune victims. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
10/31/202316 minutes, 19 seconds
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Redistricting Wars Add Uncertainty to 2024 Election

Nearly three years after the decennial process of redistricting started, ongoing litigation means state or federal political maps are still uncertain in more than a dozen states. While knock down, drag out fights over redistricting are common, that's a lot of maps to still be up in the air this late in the decade. On this special episode of On The Merits, our weekly news podcast, we examine why redrawing these maps has become such a litigious affair and what that means for lawmakers, candidates, and voters. We also learn about how the Supreme Court's decision to stop policing partisan gerrymandering has led us to where we are today. Attorneys, academics, and party officials weigh in on why the courts are now hearing so much redistricting litigation and whether this trend can even be reversed. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
10/24/202319 minutes, 28 seconds
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For Striking Autoworkers, It's Deal or No Deal Time

If autoworkers and automakers can't reach a deal, the current strike paralyzing the automotive industry could go on for months, according to Bloomberg Law reporter Ian Kullgren. The big three US automakers are signaling that they're unwilling to make many more—or, perhaps, any more—concessions to the United Autoworkers Union, led by its new firebrand president, Shawn Fain. But Fain shows no signs that he's ready to accept what the three are offering. On this episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, Kullgren talks about why Fain has taken his union into such a radical new direction. He says a main reason for the strike is the UAW's desire to ensure new US-made electric vehicles will be manufactured by unionized workers. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
10/17/202316 minutes, 52 seconds
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Shutdown Averted, But Messy Weeks Ahead For Congress

A major clash on Capitol Hill ended in an anticlimax, as lawmakers moved at the very last minute to delay a federal funding deadline by several weeks. But it's unclear whether anyone "won" here: Democrats were unable to secure additional aid for Ukraine, Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) is now in danger of losing his speakership, and the right wing of the Republican party achieved almost none of its goals. On this episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, we speak to Bloomberg Government's Jack Fitzpatrick about how we Congress got its federal funding deadline extended through Nov. 17, and about all of the upcoming legislative deadlines it faces through the rest of this year. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
10/3/202314 minutes, 17 seconds
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Death Row Defendants Find Few Wins at Supreme Court

Death penalty cases are often adjudicated for years, if not decades, before they reach the Supreme Court. But once they do, the justices must make life-or-death decisions in a relatively quick amount of time. Death penalty cases at the Supreme Court often come through the court's emergency, or "shadow" docket. In recent years, the court's conservatives have handed down rulings that closed off several avenues for capital defendants to get a rehearing of their case, or to even to challenge their method of execution. On this special episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Law's Kimberly Robinson and Lydia Wheeler take a look at what the court's rulings mean for how the death penalty works in America, and what happens at the court when an 11th hour request comes in. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
9/26/202317 minutes, 50 seconds
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Big Law DEI Under Attack From Affirmative Action Foe

After his victory over race conscious college admissions policies this summer, anti-affirmative action activist Edward Blum wasted no time moving to his next target. Last month, groups led by Blum filed suit against two of the country's largest law firms, arguing the recent high court opinion means their diversity fellowships are now illegal. The suits are already paying off: Within days of filing, two firms changed their criteria for granting fellowships designed to recruit associates from more diverse backgrounds. On this week's episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Law reporters Tatyana Monnay and Riddhi Setty talk about what these firms did and why Blum was able to achieve results so quickly. They also get into what this means for the future of DEI departments in Big Law, many of which were already struggling before the uncertainty brought by Blum's suits. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
9/19/202316 minutes, 15 seconds
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Pharma Gets Creative in Suits Against New Medicare Law

The pharmaceutical industry is making some bold constitutional arguments in its attempts to overturn a new law allowing Medicare to negotiate directly with drug makers on prices. The industry says the law, part of the Biden administration's Inflation Reduction Act, violates the Fifth, Eighth, and even First Amendment rights of companies like Merck, Johnson & Johnson, and AstraZeneca, among others. On this episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, Celine Castronuovo and David Schultz look into why the drug makers are waging this uphill legal battle against Medicare negotiations and whether they'll ultimately succeed. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
9/12/202318 minutes, 23 seconds
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Many Federal Courts Have Never Had a Black Judge

More than a quarter of the nation's federal district courts have never had even one black judge. That's the takeaway from a new investigation by Bloomberg Law's Tiana Headley and Andrew Satter. In some instances, this reflects the small black populations within these courts' respective jurisdictions. But that's not the case in places like the Southern District of Georgia, where the region's large black population has never been tapped for a federal judgeship. On this episode of our weekly news podcast, On The Merits, Tiana and Andrew talk about the lack of diversity on federal trial courts and about the situation in South Georgia specifically, where prominent black lawyers have been continually passed over for the rare open seats on the court. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
9/5/202318 minutes, 57 seconds
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DeSantis Is the Top Choice for GOP Lawyers, But Why?

The presidential campaign of Ron DeSantis is floundering, if the polls are to be believed. But there's one area where the Republican Governor of Florida is crushing his rivals: donations from big law attorneys. Bloomberg Law reporter Justin Wise combed through the latest campaign finance figures and found that lawyers, especially those at elite firms, are lining up behind DeSantis. The reason? Wise says its because these attorneys don't want Donald Trump to win and think DeSantis has the best shot at beating him. In this episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, Wise explains which attorneys from which firms are donating to DeSantis, and whether they could eventually face the wrath of the famously vindictive Trump. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
8/15/202315 minutes, 31 seconds
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Cheap Clothes and Big Lawsuits in Ultra Fast Fashion

The website Shein is known for selling ultra-cheap clothes that could be classified as "designer knockoffs." But faced with a knockoff of itself, the Singapore-based online retailer is calling in the lawyers. Shein says its Chinese rival, Temu, is not just copying it but is violating its copyrights. Temu, for its part, is suing Shein for violating American antitrust laws and monopolizing the niche market for "ultra fast fashion." Bloomberg Law reporter Katie Arcieri joins us on our weekly podcast, On The Merits, to explain what ultra fast fashion really is, and why these two Asian companies are hauling each other to court in the U.S. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
8/9/202314 minutes, 13 seconds
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Insurance Hot New Trend For Social Media Influencers

The number of accounts trying to sell you stuff on social media keeps growing. According to one report, the influencer economy doubled in just the last four years. But many influencers now find themselves vulnerable to potentially crippling legal risks and they are seeking, albeit grudgingly, to insure those risks. Bloomberg Law's Daphne Zhang found that while the insurance industry is starting to offer products to these social media mavens, the price points aren't aligning with the influencer world's economic realities. On this episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, Daphne talks about the unique legal risks online influencers face, and how failing to insure those risks can sink not just them but also the brands they work with. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
8/1/202317 minutes, 8 seconds
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'Corporate Traumas' Are Making Shareholders Lawyer Up

Walmart Inc., The Boeing Co., and Fox Corporation all have watched their boards of directors hauled to court by their own shareholders after headline-grabbing scandals. Such cases of shareholders suing their boards have garnered more attention in recent years. Some say that's indicative of a rise in mismanagement. But others who follow the country's premiere corporate law court point to one man: a judge who is less inclined than his predecessors to dismiss the lawsuits out of hand. On this episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Law's Jennifer Kay speaks to that judge, Delaware Chancery Court Vice Chancellor Travis Laster. He explains why these types of suits can be good for society and who he thinks should be held responsible after a "corporate trauma." Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
7/25/202318 minutes, 25 seconds
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Judge Newman Speaks: 96-Year-Old Fights Push to Oust Her

It's been almost four months since the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit launched an investigation into the fitness for service of one of its own judges, the 96-year-old Pauline Newman. Newman's colleagues believe she is physically and mentally unfit to sit on the bench and that she is refusing to cooperate in their investigation. For her part, Newman denies the accusations and has shown no sign that she's ready to retire from the post she's held for nearly 40 years. On this episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, we hear from Newman herself about why she doesn't want to retire, why she thinks her fellow judges are going after her, and about what she can still contribute to the federal justice system. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
7/18/202317 minutes, 20 seconds
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FEMA Straining Under the Weight of Non-Stop Disasters

A government report from 1993 said that the Federal Emergency Management Agency, or FEMA, would likely have to respond to one to two federally declared disasters per year. In just the first half of 2023, there have been around three dozen disasters. Climate change and the increase in extreme weather is putting immense strain on FEMA. And the agency has been pulled into additional crises, like helping ease the burden at the border and administering Covid testing and vaccine sites. It's not clear that there's the political will in Washington to make the organizational and fiscal fixes FEMA needs to meet the coming deluge of disasters. On this episode of our podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Government reporters Kellie Lunney and Ellen M. Gilmer talk about their reporting on what's troubling FEMA and why the agency's mission has ballooned so much since its creation. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
7/12/202318 minutes, 30 seconds
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Congress Mostly Silent on Abortion Despite No More Roe

It's been a year since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, clearing the way for Republican lawmakers to enact long-promised restrictions on abortion. However, in that time, the Republican-controlled House has passed just a handful of minor abortion bills—none of which have any hope of becoming law. On this week's episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Government reporter Zach Cohen explains why abortion legislation has thus far stalled in Congress. Zach says the real fight will come later this year when Congress has to pass its annual spending bill that often attracts lots of legislative riders. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
6/27/202317 minutes, 40 seconds
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Big Law Hiring Slump Affecting Partners and Associates

The years of breakneck expansion in the legal industry are officially over—firms have now moved into contraction mode. While we're still not seeing Great Recession-style mass layoffs—yet—the downturn is generating plenty of anxiety. On today's episode of our weekly news podcast, On The Merits, we do a Big Law roundup, featuring three Bloomberg Law reporters talking about their corner of the legal industry. First, Meghan Tribe explains why the firm Cooley is offering incoming associates $100,000 to delay their start dates, and what that might mean for their careers. Next, Mahira Dayal talks about the UK's so-called "Magic Circle" firms, and why they're waging—and, mostly, losing—a talent war with their American rivals. Finally, Roy Strom brings us the story of a Big Law titan who got tired of the grind and gave up his enormous salary to become a local traffic court judge. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
6/20/202323 minutes, 11 seconds
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Saudi Golf Deal May Need Army of Lobbyists to Survive

When the PGA announced a plan to merge with its former rival, the Saudi-backed LIV Golf, sources with the league told Bloomberg Government's Kate Ackley they didn't expect to encounter major regulatory roadblocks. However, a week later, that now appears far too optimistic. Lawmakers from across the ideological spectrum have criticized the deal, both for antitrust concerns and for Saudi Arabia's grim history of human rights abuses. On this week's episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, Ackley says the kingdom may have to tap its army of lobbyists in Washington to keep the merger alive. Also, Bloomberg Law's Dan Papscun joins us to talk about an obscure government committee that could make or break the merger with its review for national security concerns. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
6/13/202318 minutes, 51 seconds
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Biden Admin Escalating Its War on Noncompete Pacts

We learned earlier this year that President Biden doesn't like it when employers impose noncompete clauses on their employees. In January, his Federal Trade Commission rolled out a proposal that would enact a near total ban on them. Now, a second federal agency has taken action against noncompetes. Last week, the top lawyer at the National Labor Relations Board said she thinks these agreements are illegal because they impinge on workers' ability to organize. On this week's episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, we talk to labor reporter Bobby Iafolla about what this all means, and also hear a clip from a new investigative audio series from Bloomberg Law's Matt Schwartz looking into the noncompete issue. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
6/6/202315 minutes, 55 seconds
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Facial Recognition Tech: Are Total Bans the Best Move?

New York City may be the next city to enact a total ban on facial recognition technology. The technology, which uses surveillance cameras to identify people in public, has been garnering headlines for years, but there are few regulations on how it can be used. Some cities have taken action by enacting partial bans or moratoriums. One city, Portland, Oregon, has a total ban. A bill introduced in the the New York City Council would make it illegal for private businesses to use face scans to identify customers. This move comes after venues controlled by James Dolan's company, including Madison Square Garden, Radio City Music Hall, and the Beacon Theater, denied entrance to ticket buying patrons who happened to be lawyers who worked at law firms involved in litigation against Dolan's company. Is an all-out ban the best response to this technology? Are there less restrictive rules that could allow uses that benefit society, or is this technology such a threat to privacy and civil liberties that bans are the best option? On this special edition of our podcast On The Merits, we look at how to regulate this emerging technology. We hear from tech execs, a city administrator, a law professor, and a privacy advocate. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
5/16/202316 minutes, 33 seconds
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Writers Strike Over AI May Not Have A Happy Ending

Generative AI models like ChatGPT aren't sophisticated enough to write a Hollywood-level screenplay, at least not yet. But if and when that changes, Hollywood writers want to make sure they're prepared. The Writers Guild of America is on strike, and a big reason is they want to insert language into a new bargaining agreement that gives the union a say in when and how algorithms can be used. Bloomberg Law labor reporter Ian Kullgren has been following the strike, and he joins our weekly news podcast, On The Merits, to explain how labor law factors into the negotiations. He also talks about why generative AI is a big issue for Hollywood writers today, and why it could become an even bigger issue for other trades as the technology advances. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
5/9/202315 minutes, 46 seconds
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Solutions to Border Problem Seem Further Off Than Ever

For decades now, both parties in Washington have been unhappy with the status quo at the U.S.-Mexico border. But finding a congressional solution to our border problem has never seemed more out of reach. House Republicans are moving forward on a comprehensive immigration bill that few, if any, believe can pass the Democratic Senate, much less earn President Biden's signature. Meanwhile, despite Biden's campaign promises that he would start fresh, many Trump-era border policies are still in effect. Bloomberg Government reporter Ellen M. Gilmer just returned from a trip to the border where she witnessed multiple groups of migrants being apprehended. She joins On The Merits, our weekly news podcast, to talk about what she saw and whether there is any hope for improvement. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
5/2/202320 minutes, 44 seconds
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The Ugly Fight Over A Federal Judge's Retirement

The chief judge of one of the 13 federal appeals courts has filed a formal complaint against one of her colleagues. Her beef? That her nonagenarian fellow judge is cognitively impaired and unfit to serve. How did we get here? That's the topic of the latest episode of our weekly news podcast, On The Merits. We discuss the near-unprecedented move to remove 95-year-old Federal Circuit Judge Pauline Newman from the bench. Bloomberg Law reporters Kelcee Griffis and Kaustuv Basu explain who Newman is, what the complaint about her says, and what this whole affair says about the practice of granting federal judges lifetime appointments. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
4/25/202312 minutes, 29 seconds
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How Governments Profit From Selling Foreclosed Homes

When Geraldine Tyler didn't pay her tax bill, her county sold her home and kept the profits—more than twice what she actually owed. Tyler, a Minnesotan who's now in her 90s, sued. Next week she'll be appearing before the U.S. Supreme Court. Numerous states have laws allowing tax authorities to take all of the value of a property when it forecloses. But Tyler is asking the Supreme Court to declare these laws unconstitutional. Bloomberg Law reporter Perry Cooper is covering the case. She joins our weekly news podcast, On The Merits, to talk about it. Perry says Tyler's argument that her property rights have been violated may appeal to the court's ruling conservative majority. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
4/18/202311 minutes, 41 seconds
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Dueling Rulings Show Abortion Law Is Murkier Than Ever

It's now clear that the Supreme Court's ruling in Dobbs last year raised more questions than it answered. The latest example of this came late last Friday when a pair of opinions from federal judges threw the legality of a long-used abortion medication into doubt. A judge from Washington state ordered the FDA to maintain the status quo for the drug mifepristone. Another judge from Texas came to the opposite conclusion, ordering the FDA to take mifepristone off the market despite the drug having won approval more than 20 years ago. Bloomberg Law reporter Celine Castronuovo walks us through these developments and looks at what's coming in the fight over abortion—including another likely ruling from the Supreme Court—on the latest episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
4/11/202317 minutes, 52 seconds
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US Losing Arms Race in GPS-Field It Once Dominated

During the Cold War, the U.S. was the undisputed leader in a field of science called geodesy—the precise measurement of the shape and magnetic field of the Earth. The development of GPS sprung from this, along with many other useful technologies. But fast forward to today. Numerous countries have surpassed America in this field, with China in particular making extraordinary leaps. Scientists are now saying the US may have fallen so far behind in geodesy that catching up is nearly impossible. On this episode of On The Merits, our weekly news podcast, Bloomberg Government reporter Jack Fitzpatrick talks about the profound national security implications of this and why Washington's current anti-China mood may help reverse this trend. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
4/5/202317 minutes, 13 seconds
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Money Is Moving Too Fast for Banks. What's the Answer?

It used to be that bank runs took weeks, or even months, to gain steam. Not anymore. Thanks to the speed of electronic financial transactions and near-instantaneous online communication, the financial panics that felled Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank earlier this month materialized in a matter of days. Is there a solution for preventing this? Bloomberg Law reporter Evan Weinberg looked into this question for a recent story. He joins our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, to explain why it's unlikely regulators will be able to stop flash bank runs anytime soon. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
3/28/202316 minutes, 50 seconds
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Crypto Winter Means Hard Work for Bankruptcy Lawyers

Bankruptcy law is the ultimate countercyclical industry: business is booming when when things get bad. And things have almost never been worse in the crypto world, with even the most prominent coins down more than 40% in just the past year. Numerous crypto platforms—Voyager Digital, Celsius, BlockFi, and, most famously, FTX—have filed for Chapter 11. That means bankruptcy attorneys have a lot of work on their plates. Bloomberg Law spoke to more than half a dozen of the attorneys working on these cases to hear if managing a crypto bankruptcy is just another day at the office. They say nothing in their careers prepared them to unwind what were essentially quasi-banks dealing with some of the most volatile financial assets known to humankind. "I knew that they would present novel issues of law and technology," White & Case lawyer Greg Pesce, who's working on the Celsius bankruptcy, told us. "And that couldn't begin to describe what we confronted." On this special episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, we hear what it's like to be an attorney managing the downfall of the titans of crypto. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
3/21/202315 minutes, 10 seconds
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Not Just Britney: Guardianship System Rife With Abuse

Court supervised guardianships are meant to protect people who can no longer manage themselves and their assets. But a Bloomberg Law investigation found that people in guardianships can easily be taken advantage of, and that getting out of one is extraordinarily difficult. Reporters Ronnie Greene and Holly Barker just released a five-part series that looks at how guardianships can go wrong—from wealthy celebrities like Britney Spears to indigent senior citizens. They join our weekly podcast, On The Merits, to talk about how a lack of oversight creates conditions ripe for fraud and abuse. Holly discusses the particularly galling case of a New Mexico guardianship company that stole millions from its clients and whose CFO she spoke to from jail. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
3/14/202318 minutes, 35 seconds
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WEEKEND LISTEN: Guardians’ Dark Side: Lax Rules Open the Vulnerable to Abuse

Britney Spears’ conservatorship dispute brought the guardianship system to the public eye. It’s a system that entraps thousands more Americans without a platform to fight back. The industry is regulated loosely and ripe for exploitation of elderly and disabled people, Bloomberg Law found in a six-month investigation. Read the full 5-part series: https://www.bloomberglaw.com/bloomberglawnews/us-law-week/BNA%2000000186a58cdac2afe7e7ecdc9b0001
3/11/202323 minutes, 36 seconds
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Insurers Sue Their Own Clients to Dodge PFAS Claims

Suing your own customers usually isn't a wise business strategy. But that's what some insurance companies are doing as litigation over PFAS continues to flood the courts. Many of the companies that are, themselves, facing lawsuits over allegedly exposing people to the so-called "forever chemicals," are saying their insurers should be footing the costs of defending these suits. However, not only are the insurers rejecting these claims, but they're taking their own clients to court in the hopes of getting a judge to rule that their policies don't cover PFAS litigation. Bloomberg Law's Daphne Zhang has been reporting on this, and she joins this episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits. Daphne explains what's a stake for insurers in these suits and why, in the very near future, it may be all but impossible to find an insurer willing to cover PFAS. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
3/8/202313 minutes, 15 seconds
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McCarthy Looks to 'The Godfather' to Unite House GOP

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy is keeping his friends close, and his caucus closer. At least, that appears to be the intent behind what the California Republican is calling his "Five Families" strategy—a not-so-subtle reference to the classic 1972 film "The Godfather." In the hopes of avoiding the infighting that preceded his raucous Speakership vote, McCarthy is giving five different ideological factions within the House Republican caucus a much larger say in the legislation that makes it to the chamber's floor. On this episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Government's Emily Wilkins explains what McCarthy is doing and how his strategy represents a break with his predecessor, Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.). Emily also talks about whether this power sharing agreement will make it more or less likely that Congress will breach the debt ceiling later this year. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
2/28/202315 minutes, 30 seconds
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Racist Lawyer Case Puts Fair Representation To the Test

A Massachusetts inmate says he deserves a new trial because his lawyer was racist, and the justices on his state's highest court aren't sure what to make of this argument. That was the takeaway from last week's oral argument in the closely-watched appeal of Anthony Dew. Dew is a Black Muslim man who says the discovery of extremely racist Facebook posts from his court-appointed lawyer should invalidate his 2016 guilty plea. Bloomberg Law's Allie Reed is covering this first-of-its-kind trial. She joins our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, to talk about what it would mean if an attorney's personal animus toward their client could, by itself, create a conflict of interest. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
2/14/202313 minutes, 13 seconds
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With Antitrust Exemption, MLB Still Only Game in Town

Back in the 1920s, the Supreme Court granted Major League Baseball an exemption from US antitrust rules. But since then, some members of the Court—including several current justices—have said they think they may have made a mistake. Now, the Department of Justice is joining the club. Last week, it asked an appellate court to apply this exemption as narrowly as possible in an amicus brief on behalf of several defunct minor league teams that are suing MLB. On today's episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, we talk with Bloomberg Law reporter Mike Leonard about why this policy has persisted for a century if a growing number of those serving in the judicial or executive branches seem to dislike it. Mike also talks about how the Supreme Court seems eager to take on sports-related cases and whether this means MLB's exemption is down to its last strike. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
2/7/202312 minutes, 34 seconds
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Mass Tort Advertising Now an Industry Unto Itself

Have you seen the ads recruiting plaintiffs in the Camp Lejeune case? If you haven't, you've surely seen ones for mesothelioma, pesticides, talcum powder, or any number of big mass tort cases in recent years. The marketing used to find clients for these cases has become much more sophisticated, and the budgets used to identify potential clients have been growing exponentially. For the Camp Lejeune case, which involves decades of contaminated drinking water at a military installation in North Carolina, the spending could shatter records. Bloomberg Law reporter Roy Strom dug into how this type of legal marketing works and who benefits from it. He joins our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, to talk about how the mass tort bar finds its clients and why this makes some people uneasy. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
1/31/202314 minutes, 38 seconds
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Ohio Corruption Case Asks, Is It Bribery or Donation?

A trial is currently underway against the former speaker of the Ohio House of Representatives over allegations he accepted millions in bribes. But he says the money was political speech protected by the First Amendment - and that he has Supreme Court cases to back him up. One case, 2010's Citizens United vs. FEC, reversed longstanding campaign finance restrictions as violating the First Amendment. Today, former Ohio speaker Larry Householder's trial is a test of how money works in politics in a post-Citizens United world. If Householder is ultimately acquitted, it may set a new precedent for just how far prosecutors must go to win a political corruption case. On this episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Law correspondent Alex Ebert explains how Householder got in this legal trouble in the first place and also why his novel defense is worrying some campaign finance watchdogs. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
1/24/202313 minutes, 43 seconds
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Investors' Timeline to Sue Grows in New Opioid Ruling

Investors may have a lot more opportunity to sue their boards of directors for mismanagement after a ruling last month in a Delaware opioid case. The ruling from Delaware Chancery Court, the country's premiere venue for corporate law disputes, was in a case against drug wholesaler AmerisourceBergen that centered on allegations its reckless opioid selling damaged the company's stock price. The court found that investors can introduce evidence of mismanagement dating back years—a much longer time period than AmerisourceBergen had wanted. Bloomberg Law reporter Jennifer Kay wrote a story about the implication of this ruling on shareholder suits and on corporate accountability. She spoke about these topics to Washington & Lee University School of Law professor Carliss Chatman on our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
1/17/202312 minutes, 49 seconds
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FDA Knows About Toxins in Baby Food But Can't Fix It

The FDA has known for years that baby food can contain alarming amounts of toxic metals, including lead, arsenic, and cadmium. But why has it been slow to act? A team of Bloomberg Law reporters set out to answer this question, and to see how bad the baby food problem really is. For their project, Bloomberg Law independently tested more than two dozen products for contaminants. Two of those reporters, Gary Harki and Celine Castronuovo, join our weekly podcast, On The Merits, to talk about why they launched this investigation and answer why regulators may be behind the curve on this issue. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
1/10/202318 minutes, 2 seconds
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Affirmative Action's Unlikely Path to Surviving SCOTUS

On Oct. 31, 2022, the Supreme Court heard arguments that Harvard's and the University of North Carolina's use of race in admissions goes too far. Given the current ideological makeup of the Supreme Court, it's almost certain the justices will overturn more than 40 years of precedent and declare affirmative action in higher education unconstitutional. But, as Bloomberg Law's Matthew Schwartz explains, there is a remote-but-not-impossible chance that the court may issue a surprise ruling upholding affirmative action but further limiting how it can be used. In this episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, Matthew joins us to speculate on the court's ruling in this potentially landmark case and to talk about his recent four-part podcast series on affirmative action. Matthew also talks about the anti-affirmative action activist driving this case and what is behind his motivations. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
1/3/202315 minutes, 21 seconds
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GOP AGs Target Judges to Thwart Biden Administration

Forum shopping is the art of selecting a specific court in which to file a suit, and lawyers have been doing it since time immemorial. But a Bloomberg Law data analysis shows that the practice has changed in recent years. Republican Attorneys General who are suing the Biden administration have gravitated toward a handful of small, rural courthouses run by Trump-appointed judges. And those judges have been keen to issue nationwide injunctions halting administration policies. Bloomberg Law reporters Lydia Wheeler and Madison Alder join our weekly podcast, On The Merits, to discuss their findings, explain who these judges are, and what this means for the future of administrative law. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
12/20/202215 minutes, 51 seconds
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Despite Defections, Law School Rankings Alive and Well

News of the demise of law school rankings has been greatly exaggerated, according to the guests on our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits. You could be forgiven for thinking otherwise. Around a dozen of the top law schools in the country have said they'll no longer provide data to US News & World Report for its annual rankings. The schools say the rankings over-emphasize metrics that benefit already privileged and wealthy applications, and give short shrift to lawyers interested in public service or who need financial aid. However, Bloomberg Law's Vivia Chen and Kaustuv Basu say that even without these schools' participation, the rankings will likely continue on with no interruption. And, they say, the move to boycott the rankings will likely not improve legal industry diversity in the way the schools hope. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
12/13/202215 minutes, 18 seconds
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Amid Stonewalling, Whistleblower Tips to SEC Dry Up

After the Bernie Madoff scandal, the SEC created a whistleblower program that encouraged people to provide information by promising them a cut of the recovered funds. At first, the agency was inundated with tips. But now, the number of people reporting financial fraud is dwindling. The guests on this week's episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, say they know why. One problem: it's unclear how or why the SEC pays rewards to some whistleblowers but not others. And, even if you're entitled to a reward, it can take years of waiting for the agency to pay out. Bloomberg Law's John Holland speaks with whistleblower Janice Shell and whistleblower attorney Bill Singer about the problems with this program and how they can be fixed. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
12/6/202216 minutes, 34 seconds
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Elections Now Happen in Both Ballot Boxes and Courts

Elections are typically decided at the ballot box. But in the past few years, the judicial system has been getting more and more involved. Spending on election-related litigation has ballooned during this time, according to George Washington University law professor Spencer Overton. This is one of many indications that political fights aren't ending when the results are announced but are instead migrating to courthouses across the country, he says. Overton joins our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, to talk about why this trend is happening and to run down the most significant election law cases that were filed after this month's midterm contests. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
11/29/202214 minutes, 44 seconds
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Why Big Law Layoffs Aren't a Return to the Dark Days

If you're an attorney who lived through the dark days of the Great Recession, you could be forgiven for having flashbacks after reading a recent story by Bloomberg Law's Roy Strom and Meghan Tribe. They reported that several heavy hitters in Big Law, including Cooley LLP and Kirkland & Ellis, have laid off attorneys in recent months. Other firms are expected to follow suit next year. But they also spoke to several industry watchers who say this isn't Great Recession 2.0. For one, global economic conditions aren't as bad—at least not yet. And demand for legal services is still robust, even if not at the frenzied levels it was earlier this year and last year. Tribe joins our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, to talk about why firms are following a mega-profitable 2021 with layoffs in 2022. We also hear from Bloomberg Law video producer Macarena Carrizosa about one of the main drivers of legal industry volatility—the billable hour—and whether moving to a new compensation system is advisable or even possible. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
11/15/202217 minutes, 36 seconds
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Lawyers Give More Time, Less Cash This Election Cycle

It's common for attorneys to do pro bono work monitoring elections. But this year feels different to many of the lawyers who are volunteering. That's one of the takeaways from a recent story by Bloomberg Law's Sam Skolnik about the urgency lawyers feel about today's midterm elections. However, that urgency is not showing up in campaign finance data. Bloomberg Law columnist Roy Strom dug into the numbers and found that lawyers are donating to candidates at much lower rates than previous midterms. Skolnik and Strom join this week's episode of On The Merits, Bloomberg Law's weekly legal news podcast, to talk about the roles that attorneys are—and are not—playing in today's elections. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
11/8/202215 minutes, 37 seconds
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Musk Gravitates To Lawyers Who Share His Personality

One thing we have learned over the years about Elon Musk is that the tech billionaire likes to surround himself with people who have personality traits similar to his own: confidence, boldness, and a total lack of fear when it comes to mass communication. So it shouldn't be surprising that Musk, who famously has little patience for attorneys, is gravitating toward lawyers who possess these traits in abundance like Quinn Emanuel's Alex Spiro. However, Musk is also known to hold grudges, and that's bad news for Twitter firms Cooley and Perkins Coie, whom Musk has previously slammed (on Twitter, naturally). To sort out what all this means, and why Quinn's culture may be a better fit for Musk-world than that of other Big Law firms, we heard from Bloomberg Law's Chris Opfer and Justin Wise. They join our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, to discuss the fallout from the consummated Twitter deal and what it says about the Big Law ecosystem. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
11/1/202216 minutes, 32 seconds
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No Address, No HQ: Feds Weigh How to Serve Crypto Group

The crypto world is known for, among other things, exotic legal structures and an extreme level of anonymity. But both of those attributes can make it a challenging place for plaintiffs' attorneys. The constitution requires plaintiffs to prove they've served their defendants with a notice of their lawsuit. Failure to do so properly can tank an otherwise promising case. But process serving is tricky when the only thing you know about the target of your lawsuit is a username on a decentralized crypto exchange. On this episode of our weekly legal new podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Law reporter Matt Bultman talks about the curious case of Ooki. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said Ooki, a decentralized crypto organization, violated registration rules. The agency thought it devised a clever way to serve the shadowy group with a suit—only to find that its unorthodox efforts might have compromised its case. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
10/25/202214 minutes, 18 seconds
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Is Judge's Yale Boycott A Sign of 'Supreme' Ambitions?

Judge James Ho said his new policy of refusing to hire clerks who attended Yale University was about combating cancel culture. But it may also be a sign that the Trump appointee is angling for a promotion. Of course, since Ho is currently serving on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, that means there's only one final rung to climb on the judicial career ladder: the Supreme Court. On this episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Law columnists Lydia Wheeler and Vivia Chen speculate on what motivated Ho's decision. They say Ho's headline-grabbing move is likely an attempt to ensure that his name is at or near the top of a future Republican President's Supreme Court nominee shortlist. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
10/18/202219 minutes, 15 seconds
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How Jones Day Became Trump's Favorite Law Firm

Since 2015, Jones Day has embraced Donald Trump more than any other firm within Big Law. Many of the firm's lawyers joined the administration in high profile positions across the government, helped pick candidates for federal judgeships and the Supreme Court, and some were even appointed as judges themselves. But with Trump now out of office and his reputation tarnished by the Jan. 6 riot, where does that leave the 129-year old legal industry behemoth? New York Times editor David Enrich has written a book about how and why Jones Day became so enmeshed with the Trump administration. He joins our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, to talk about where Jones Day goes from here. "I think there will be some clients, and certainly some potential employees, who will hesitate to work with Jones Day," Enrich says, "but I think there are a lot of other clients who are probably eager for this kind of no-holds-barred, smash mouth defense that Jones Day is better at providing than just about anyone else." Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
10/4/202222 minutes, 14 seconds
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GCs: Pay Transparency Laws Are Coming, Ready or Not

California Governor Gavin Newsom (D) signed into law earlier today a measure that requires all companies in his state include salary ranges in their job listings. While only a handful of states have enacted these so-called pay transparency laws, the tide is turning and general counsels should work to get in front of these laws now says Rob Chesnut, a former in-house counsel at eBay and Airbnb and new columnist for Bloomberg Law. That's because current employees may take legal action against the salary disparities they discover when they see these job listings, Chesnut says. On this episode of On The Merits, our weekly legal news podcast, Chesnut talks about what these kinds of laws will mean for general counsels and why fighting the trend of greater workplace transparency will likely be ineffective. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
9/27/202216 minutes, 43 seconds
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Big Law Gender Gap: Re-imagining the Legal Workforce

Law firms have a gender equity problem. Data has shown that women struggle to reach the upper levels of the profession, and that those who do had to work harder than their male counterparts. For example, two thirds of female attorneys say they've been perceived as less committed to their careers, compared with just two percent of male attorneys, according to a 2019 ABA survey. The reasons why aren't a mystery: the pay gap, the "motherhood penalty," legacy origination, a dearth of male mentors, and sexism, to name a few. But what are the solutions? If the ideal, female-friendly law firm could be created from scratch, with an infinite amount of start-up capital, how would it be done? We posed that question to nearly a dozen people in the legal industry, including diversity consultants, law firm partners, ex-partners, associates, and women who were on track to make partner but felt they were forced to leave. In this podcast, they tell us what they'd prioritize and some of the challenges that can't be fixed with money. Do you have an idea of how to create a women-friendly law firm? Share your thoughts with us by clicking here.
9/21/202230 minutes, 39 seconds
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New ATF Chief on Fighting Gun Violence With Big Data

Steven Dettelbach is the new head of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Earlier this year he squeaked through the Senate confirmation process by a 48-46 vote. The narrowness of his confirmation vote is a reflection of the challenges Dettelbach faces in leading the controversial agency in a polarized political environment. And despite a rise in gun violence in recent years, the ATF lacks the resources and manpower of other parts of the federal government. On this episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, Dettelbach sits down with Bloomberg Law reporter Courtney Rozen to explain how his agency is using data analytics to do more with less. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
9/13/20229 minutes, 20 seconds
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Dr. Fauci on What's Next After 54-Year Stint at NIH

Dr. Anthony Fauci is leaving the National Institutes of Health, but he's been very clear that he's not retiring. The man who is arguably America's most famous physician announced in late August that his more than five decade career in government will be coming to an end. But, he says he will continue to work in the field of medical science—especially with the Covid-19 pandemic still lingering. On this episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, we feature an exclusive interview with Dr. Fauci by a trio of Bloomberg reporters. They discuss his post-NIH plans—including potentially penning a memoir— as well as his desire to continue serving on medical advisory boards and helping develop universal vaccines for Covid, HIV, and the flu. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
9/6/202211 minutes, 57 seconds
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What Happens to Forgiven Loans if Biden Loses in Court?

It's a near certainty that someone, somewhere will challenge President Biden's student loan forgiveness plan in court. What's uncertain is what will happen if Biden loses. As a legal justification for wiping out billions in student loans, the White House cited a post-9/11 law originally conceived as a way to help soldiers fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan. Some administrative law experts question the legality of using this law to forgive student loans during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. On today's episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Law White House reporter Courtney Rozen sets up the coming legal fight over the extent of presidential authority around student loans. And she discusses what could happen if the program ultimately gets struck down in court. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
8/30/202213 minutes, 6 seconds
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Why Can't Tesla Keep Its Top Lawyer?

The revolving door in Tesla's legal department is spinning as fast as ever. A few weeks ago, it appointed its seventh chief legal officer within just the past four years. Amid Tesla's many legal problems - from allegations of unfair labor practices to Tesla's auto-pilot issues - is the automaker's inability to hold onto a general counsel actually a problem? Or is this a non-issue for the electric car giant and its billionaire owner Elon Musk's ? On today's episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, we hear from Bloomberg Law reporter Brian Baxter, who broke the news last week of the latest attorney to leave Tesla. He talks about why this has been happening, how he learned about it, and what Tesla is or isn't doing to stop this trend. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
8/23/202214 minutes, 6 seconds
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A New Documentary on Dewey & LeBoeuf's Implosion

It's been 10 years since the epic collapse of mega-law firm Dewey & LeBoeuf, and we've never heard from its former chairman, Steven Davis. Until now. Davis spoke at length with Andrew Satter and Josh Block, the directors of a new documentary, about how Dewey grew so big so fast—and why it fell so far. The documentary video on Davis and his firm comes out Aug. 3. But in this episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, Satter and Block give a preview about why Davis chose to break his silence now, and why law firms should look to Dewey as a cautionary tale. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
8/2/202221 minutes, 18 seconds
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Has SEC Tips Program Stopped Next Madoff? No One Knows

In the wake of the Bernie Madoff scandal in the late 2000s, the SEC set up a program to reward whistleblowers who uncover fraud against investors. Since then, the program has paid out more than $1.3 billion. But who's receiving this money? And what information are they providing to the agency? And why is a huge chunk of the money going to whistleblowers represented by attorneys who used to work at the SEC? Bloomberg Law reporter John Holland recently published an investigative report looking at all of these questions. He found that the SEC's whistleblower program is operating with shockingly little oversight from either the courts or Congress. Holland joins this week's episode of our legal news podcast, On The Merits, with two of his sources: whistleblower attorney Reuben Guttman, and University of Kansas law professor Alex Platt, who's conducted research into what's happening here. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
7/26/202222 minutes, 4 seconds
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Musk's Twitter Drama May Not Be the Last Disputed Deal

For months now, both the legal and financial worlds have had their eyes glued to billionaire Elon Musk's theatrical attempt to purchase (or not) the social media giant Twitter. Musk is now trying to back out of the $44 billion deal, claiming Twitter refused to provide him with vital information. Twitter is trying to force Musk to follow through on the purchase by taking him to court in Delaware, where earlier today a judge set an expedited trial date for October. If this deal ultimately does go unconsummated, it may not be the only one. A contracting economy and tumbling stock markets mean that mergers and acquisitions that made sense during expansionary times may not make sense any longer. On today's episode of On The Merits, our weekly legal news podcast, Bloomberg Law's Matthew Bultman and Bloomberg News' Ed Hammond discuss what the Delaware Chancery Court can really do in Twitter v. Musk, what happens if Musk loses this case, and why Twitter would even still want to be owned by someone who is publicly bashing the company. They also talk about the rocky future for the broader deals market in an ailing economy—and what that may mean for the attorneys who rely on it for billable hours. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
7/19/202216 minutes, 24 seconds
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SCOTUS Abortion Ruling Roils Corporations and Big Law

The Supreme Court's landmark Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization ruling last month was the end of Roe v. Wade, but the beginning of a whole new era of turmoil over reproductive rights in corporate America. For example, big corporations and law firms are weighing whether they should offer to pay for their employees to travel to receive an abortion. And if they do, how to respond if Republican lawmakers retaliate against them. Will some of these companies play both sides of the issue and continue to donate to GOP lawmakers, while publicly denouncing the abortion laws they enact? Beyond corporate politics, there's also the more tangible issue of health care access. Some new state anti-abortion laws place restrictions on drugs that can terminate a pregnancy. But some doctors, pharmacists, and patients say it's unclear if it's still legal to prescribe these drugs for vital off-label uses. Bloomberg Law has been covering all of the fallout from the abortion ruling, and on this week's episode of On The Merits, our weekly legal news podcast, reporters Maia Spoto, Clara Hudson, and Celine Castronuovo dig into all of the new issues that have arisen in the past few weeks. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
7/12/202218 minutes, 6 seconds
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Clement Defection Raises Questions on Client Loyalty

Last week Paul Clement, arguably the most experienced Supreme Court litigator ever, announced he was leaving Kirkland & Ellis, arguably the largest law firm ever. He cited "client loyalty" as his reason for packing his bags. Clement left after the mega-firm decided, in the wake of several mass shootings, that it would no longer work on gun rights issues. He said he disagreed with this decision and that attorneys have a "professional responsibility" to represent these clients. The move raised an eternal question within the legal world: do clients choose their attorneys, or do attorneys choose their clients? On this week's episode of our legal news podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Law reporter Roy Strom weighs in. He says, at least in civil cases, there's no ethical problem with dropping a client and that firms have a long history of being selective about whom they represent. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
6/28/202214 minutes, 10 seconds
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Seth Green’s Stolen ‘Bored Ape’ NFT Saga Ends Without Case Law

The actor Seth Green has reportedly paid a ransom for the return of his purloined NFT, and that's disappointing some intellectual property attorneys. For those not in the know: Green, who played Dr. Evil's son in the Austin Powers franchise, was planning to develop a TV show around an NFT he had purchased. But then a hacker stole the digital token from him. This raised all sorts of novel legal issues around whether Green still had the rights to exploit the IP. Riddhi Setty, an IP reporter with Bloomberg Law, says a lot of attorneys were hoping Green would go to court and get a ruling from a judge about whether he still owned the stolen token's IP. This could have cleared up some unanswered intellectual property questions around digital assets. For this episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, Setty explains to us why Green was in this situation in the first place, and why Green's decision not to go to court only delays the legal reckoning for NFTs and intellectual property. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
6/14/202211 minutes, 46 seconds
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John Quinn On Why Big Law Should 'Work From Anywhere'

As the pandemic started to ease, big law leaders worked to fine-tune their remote work policies. Should lawyers be in the office two days a week? Three? Quinn Emanuel had another idea—never. The Los Angeles-based firm, led by its iconoclastic founder, John Quinn, embraced a work-from-anywhere policy. Quinn says it wasn't without its challenges, but that he's glad his namesake firm made this move. At the very least, he says, he hopes it will spur disgruntled attorneys working at more inflexible firms to send him their résumés. On this week's episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, Quinn speaks to Bloomberg Law's Roy Strom about why Quinn Emanuel is going all in on the remote work trend within Big Law. He also talks about why he thinks a tremendously profitable 2021 was not a fluke for the litigation-focused Quinn Emanuel. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
6/7/202219 minutes, 4 seconds
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Alex Ruoff reads his story on the right-to-try fight over psychedelics

On this special weekend edition of On The Merits, Bloomberg Law reporter Alex Ruoff reads his story about terminally ill patients fighting the DEA for the right to use psychedelic drugs. Click here to read the story in print.
6/4/20227 minutes, 29 seconds
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Can Prosecutors Indict Trump Over 2020 Election Claims?

Former President Donald Trump should face criminal charges for his role in the Jan. 6 insurrection, according to one federal judge. In an expansive and unusual ruling earlier this spring, David O. Carter, a Clinton-appointed judge from the Central District of California, gave federal prosecutors a blueprint for how they could indict the former president. But don't expect an indictment anytime soon. Ex-prosecutors say that, even if the evidence is there, federal prosecutors must take other factors into consideration, such as the threat of domestic unrest. Bloomberg Law's John Holland joins our weekly podcast, On The Merits, to talk about his conversations with these former prosecutors and about why bringing charges against Trump would be difficult—though far from impossible. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
5/24/202212 minutes, 50 seconds
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Crypto's Crashing, But Big Law Still Loves Its Clients

Crypto prices are plummeting, but Big Law isn't rushing for the exits. Far from it. Many of the country's biggest law firms have thrown themselves head first into the cryptocurrency world, with some even establishing specialized crypto practice groups. Bloomberg Law reporter Sam Skolnik says the reasons are clear: a confusing regulatory environment combined with crypto companies now flush with enough funds to be able to afford Big Law representation. On this episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, Sam talks about which firms are most active in crypto and why Big Law is bullish on the industry's future. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
5/17/202213 minutes, 35 seconds
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Fauci Heads to Capitol Hill For More Covid Funding

Dr. Anthony Fauci is a household name, but that doesn't mean he gets everything he wants from Congress. As the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Dr. Fauci is heading to Capitol Hill to try to convince legislators to fund President Biden's $10 billion Covid-19 bill. Bloomberg Law health reporter Jeannie Baumann spoke to Dr. Fauci about what his agency needs the funding for, what will happen if it doesn't materialize, and whether we'll see a new viral variant in the future. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
5/10/202211 minutes, 49 seconds
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Supreme Court Leak May Start a New Era for Justices

We got a window into the inner workings of the usually secretive Supreme Court with a leaked draft opinion in a landmark abortion case. As surprising, even shocking, as this leak was, it could be the beginning of a new era at the court in which the justices' private deliberations are no longer sacrosanct and leaks become more common. On this special breaking news edition of On The Merits, Kimberly Robinson and Jordan Rubin, hosts of our Supreme Court podcast Cases and Controversies, talk about what this might mean for the future of the court and about how the leaked opinion itself could affect women seeking abortions. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
5/3/202214 minutes, 13 seconds
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Pandora, Spotify Face Comics' Costly Copyright Suits

When it comes to copyright law, stand-up comedy recordings have generally been treated differently than music recordings. At least, until now. The estates of Robin Williams and George Carlin are among several plaintiffs in a copyright infringement lawsuit against Pandora that centers on whether the streaming service has the proper license for their work. Spotify is also having similar disputes with comics, though out of court. On today's episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Law reporter Isaiah Poritz explains how the copyright discrepancy between comedy and music started, why it may be going away, and why the comics suing these streaming giants will probably end up laughing all the way to the bank. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
4/26/202214 minutes, 36 seconds
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On Abortion, Red States Not Waiting for Supreme Court

This summer, the Supreme Court is expected to hand down a ruling in a case called Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization. It could significantly alter—or even eliminate altogether—Roe v. Wade and the legality of abortion in America. But rather than waiting to see what the justices do, many Republican-led states are moving to enact their own restrictive abortion laws. And some blue state legislatures are working to bolster abortion access. On today's episode of On The Merits, our weekly legal news podcast, we examine the state of abortion laws in the states. Bloomberg Law correspondent Jennifer Kay explains why some states are not waiting for the Dobbs opinion to act, while Bloomberg Law reporter Lydia Wheeler discusses whether these laws could apply to out-of-state health care providers. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
4/19/202217 minutes, 20 seconds
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Women Struggle to Bring Equal Pay Suits to Court

A bill is currently sitting on the desk of Gov. Tate Reeves (R) that would make his state, Mississippi, the 50th and final one to adopt a law mandating equal pay for men and women. However, not all women are celebrating. Women's rights advocates say the Mississippi law is watered down to the point of absurdity—for example, it allows employers to pay women less based on their prior salary or their "negotiating tactics." On today's weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, we hear from Andrea Johnson, director of state policy at the National Women's Law Center, about where the equal pay movement stands, both in the courts and state legislatures. She tells Bloomberg Law correspondent Jennifer Kay that lawmakers are acting out of unfounded fears that employers will be deluged with compensation-related lawsuits. In reality, Johnson says, bringing and winning a pay discrimination suit is very difficult, even in states with robust equal pay laws. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
4/12/202222 minutes, 8 seconds
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ESG Investors Get Big Win With New SEC Climate Rule

Some good news for ESG investors, and even better news for accountants: the Securities and Exchange Commission just unveiled a new proposal that would force public companies to disclose mountains of climate change information. The proposal goes far beyond requiring disclosure of the fossil fuels a company itself uses: It would also have companies report out the carbon footprint of their supply chains and even, in some cases, of the customers who use their products. On today's On The Merits, our weekly legal news podcast, we hear from Bloomberg News sustainability editor Eric Roston about what's in this SEC proposal and why, for so-called "green investors," this has been a long time coming. We also hear from Bloomberg Tax's Amanda Iacone about why these disclosure rules could be a boon for accountants. After all, someone has to audit all of those new corporate climate statements. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
3/29/202217 minutes, 7 seconds
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Apple Litigation Is Very Lucrative for Some Firms

A Bloomberg Law analysis found that, within the tech industry, Apple uses outside law firms at a rate three times higher than its nearest rival. But which firms the iPhone maker uses may surprise you. On this episode of On The Merits, we hear from three Bloomberg Law reporters about why the Silicon Valley giant steers a large portion of its legal business toward two small-to-mid-size Southern law firms. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
3/28/202218 minutes, 8 seconds
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Jackson Defends Her Defense Work in Senate Hearings

Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson spent a good portion of the first day of her Supreme Court nomination hearings in the U.S. Senate defending her work as a defense lawyer. Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee grilled the nominee about her time as a public defender, including her work defending prisoners held at Guantanamo Bay. Senators also targeted sentences she handed down to people convicted on child pornography charges when she was a judge on the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. On this episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, we talk to Bloomberg Law reporter Jordan Rubin about how the hearings have been going so far, why Republicans are choosing this line of attack, and whether there's anything the GOP might do to stop Judge Jackson from becoming Justice Jackson. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
3/22/20229 minutes, 43 seconds
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War in Ukraine and Life-or-Death Choices for Big Law

Law firms that do business in Ukraine or in Russia have had to make a series of rapid decisions over the past weeks that could have the highest of consequences. Maintaining relationships with Russian clients, aside from earning them public condemnation, could put law firms afoul of new sanctions imposed after Russia's invasion of its neighbor last month. But dropping clients could also subject their Russian staffers to state-sanctioned retaliation. And this is to say nothing of the firms that have offices in Ukraine itself, where just ensuring the physical safety of their attorneys is a challenge. On today's On The Merits, our weekly legal news podcast, Bloomberg Law editor Chris Opfer talks about why some firms have turned on a dime to drop their Russian business, while others haven't and still others can't. Chris also talks about why the developments of the past weeks show that reputational risk is a much bigger factor in law firms' decision making than it was just a few years ago. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
3/8/202216 minutes, 17 seconds
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Bloomberg Law's Story on Women and the Partner Track [Narrated Article]

In this special bonus episode, listen to Bloomberg Law reporter Ayanna Alexander read her story about women who reject the partner track at big law firms.
3/5/20227 minutes, 17 seconds
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Trump's Multidimensional Legal Peril Drags Into 2022

The former president of the United States is waging a complex defensive legal battle on numerous fronts. From Manhattan to Albany to Atlanta and elsewhere, prosecutors are circling Donald Trump, his business, and his family. The latest blow came last month when accounting firm Mazars USA LLP not only cut ties with Trump but also announced it was disavowing a decade's worth of his financial statements. It was a move that some speculated may indicate Mazars is now cooperating with prosecutors investigating Trump's businesses. On today's episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, we speak with three reporters covering the intricate legal dealings of the former president. Amanda Iacone, Erik Larson, and Greg Farrell talk about some of the most prominent investigations into Trump, why they're moving so slowly, and about whether Trump will have enough resources to keep fighting them. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
3/1/202220 minutes, 31 seconds
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Bloomberg Law's Profile of Kirkland & Ellis [Narrated Article]

In this special bonus episode, listen to Bloomberg Law columnist Roy Strom read his story profiling one of the largest and most powerful law firms in America, Kirkland & Ellis.
2/19/202217 minutes, 32 seconds
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EV Charger Locations Might Make 'Filling Up' Tricky

Within a decade or so, at least several states will have banned the sale of new gas-powered automobiles. The electrification of America's cars is coming, but is America ready? To get the country ready, President Biden and Democrats in Congress gave states more than $7 billion to install electric vehicle charging stations across the country. But, as Bloomberg Government's Lillianna Byington found, an Eisenhower-era law means these charging stations can't be built on highways, as many EV advocates had hoped. On today's episode of our On The Merits podcast, Lillianna explains why road-tripping EV drivers will have to get off of the highway to charge up. She also talks about some of the other obstacles EVs must overcome before overtaking their gas-powered predecessors. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
2/15/202211 minutes, 56 seconds
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NFL's Flores Suit Illuminates Limits of Rooney Rule

The Rooney Rule started in the NFL, but it has since transcended the league—and professional sports altogether—to become a diversity initiative used across corporate America. The rule, named after former Pittsburgh Steelers owner Dan Rooney, requires any organization that implements it to interview at least one minority candidate for senior job openings. But, as last week's explosive lawsuit from former Miami Dolphins coach Brian Flores shows, the Rooney Rule has some glaring limitations. On this episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, we discuss those limitations with Bloomberg News courts reporter Chris Dolmetsch and Bloomberg Law employment reporter Erin Mulvaney. Chris tells us about the origins of Flores' suit and the high-profile lawyer representing him, while Erin explains the current thinking on whether the Rooney Rule is still effective. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
2/8/202219 minutes, 23 seconds
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NYC's Broken Property Tax System Causing Real Pain

No property tax system is totally fair, but few are as unbalanced and often skewed in favor of the wealthy as New York City's. A law passed in Albany in the early 1980's was supposed to keep taxes on the Big Apple's single-family homes from rising too quickly. But what that means is that now a co-op in Staten Island has a tax bill 2,000% higher than a similarly priced brownstone in Brooklyn. On today's episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, we hear from Bloomberg Law's Donna Borak and Andrew Satter, who just published a big investigation into this topic. They tell us about what they've learned and about exactly how the city's Kafkaesque property tax system hurts its homeowners. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
2/1/202217 minutes, 37 seconds
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Breyer's Clerks Recall 'Happy Warrior'

Justice Stephen Breyer is known for letting his flamboyant intellect shine on the bench. And, according to those who clerked for him, Breyer's personality outside of the courtroom was no different. It was reported earlier today that this will be the 27-year veteran of the Supreme Court's final term. To learn more about who Breyer is, we spoke with some of the attorneys who clerked for the Justice over the years. Breyer was described as someone with an insatiable, extroverted mind, who thrived on conversation—sometimes to a fault. Andrew Crespo, a former clerk and current Harvard Law School professor, said going to lunch with the Justice required finding a restaurant with lots of space "so that, when we're sitting down and he's telling us all these stories about the Court, that we weren't accidentally sitting next to a reporter." In this special episode of our Cases & Controversies podcast, former Breyer clerks share stories from their time at the Court and about the man they describe as a "happy warrior," who remained optimistic despite a tenure spent, for the most part, in the Court's ideological minority. In this episode we hear from: Danielle Gray, global chief legal officer for Walgreens Boots Alliance Pratik Shah, a partner at the firm Akin Gump Brianne Gorod, chief counsel at the Constitutional Accountability Center Andrew Crespo, a professor at Harvard Law School Do you have feedback on this episode of Cases & Controversies? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
1/27/20229 minutes, 51 seconds
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Diversity & Disability: A Live Legal Discussion

There's been a big push in recent years to make the legal profession more diverse, especially within Big Law. So why has this largely excluded people with disabilities? The stigma against people with disabilities in the workplace is strong, even—and especially—at law firms, according to Bloomberg Law reporter Ayanna Alexander. On today's On The Merits podcast, we present a live online discussion with Ayanna about her recent story about the push to diversify the diversity movement within the legal profession. Ayanna talks about why so few law firms have signed an ABA pledge on people with disabilities and why firms likely employ many more attorneys with disabilities than they realize. Do you have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
1/25/202220 minutes, 42 seconds
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Cravath, Kirkland, Other Titans Have Another Huge Year

It was an extraordinarily lucrative year for law firms that help companies go public, or that help companies make acquisitions. Thanks to the frenzied SPAC boom, along with rock bottom interest rates, corporate transaction activity in 2021 shattered records. However, the largest beneficiaries of this activity were not upstart, boutique firms but rather the titans of the legal world: Kirkland & Ellis, Davis Polk & Wardwell, Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz, Ropes & Gray, and so on. On today's episode of On The Merits, our weekly legal news podcast, we hear from Bloomberg Law's Roy Strom and Ruiqi Chen about why the rich seem to only get richer in the Big Law world. They also get into the reasons why 2022 could be a far less active year for M&A and IPO business. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
1/11/202212 minutes, 53 seconds
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Covid Disability Claims Get Some Clarity, But Not Much

Both employers and employees got a little bit of clarity last month when the EEOC issued guidance confirming that, yes, Covid-19 can trigger a disability as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act. But will this document put to rest all disputes between employers and employees about Covid-19 and disability claims? Not by a long shot. On today's episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, employment law reporter Erin Mulvaney joins us to talk about what the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission just did. She explains why the agency is addressing both employers who aren't recognizing a disability, and employers who are tagging their workers as disabled unwillingly. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
1/4/202216 minutes, 10 seconds
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Competing Climate Rules Worry Federal Contractors

Federal contractors are going to have to share more information about their greenhouse gas emissions with the public, under new General Services Administration reporting requirements the White House introduced earlier this month. However, this isn't the only climate reporting rule these contractors will have to mind. The Securities and Exchange Commission is about to release its own reporting rules early next year, and no one seems to be sure where or whether the two rules will overlap. On today's episode of On The Merits, our weekly legal news podcast, Bloomberg Law's Andrew Ramonas explains how these dueling climate rules could open federal contractors up to serious legal liability—especially if these firms provide conflicting data to different federal agencies. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
12/21/202114 minutes, 33 seconds
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Amazon Is Front of Mind for New Teamsters President

It's notable whenever the International Brotherhood of Teamsters elects a new president, but it was especially notable last month when Sean O'Brien soundly defeated a rival backed by the union's outgoing president, James P. Hoffa. During the campaign, O'Brien portrayed himself as an outsider and said the Teamsters should take a more aggressive stance—particularly toward Amazon Inc. O'Brien granted a post-election interview to Bloomberg Law's Ian Kullgren. And in this episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, Kullgren asks O'Brien about his plans to take on the e-commerce giant and his relationship to Labor Secretary, and fellow Bostonian, Marty Walsh. President-Elect O'Brien will lead the union starting in March 2022. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
12/15/202125 minutes, 24 seconds
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Legal Business Gatekeepers Cling to Their Bar Exam

Hiring a lawyer is expensive—way too expensive, according to Clifford Winston. The Brookings Institution economist and former MIT professor says the legal profession's excessive licensure requirements are the cause of this, leading to an industry where demand far exceeds supply. Winston has written several books about the problem and about why he thinks basic legal tasks should be opened up to people who haven't necessarily passed the bar, or even possess a law degree. Winston spoke with Adam Allington, a Bloomberg Law audio producer and host of the investigative podcast series, [Un]Common Law, for Adam's recent three-part series on the bar exam. In this interview, Winston lays out his argument for why lawyers are harming the public good, while also lining their own pockets, by making it so difficult to join their ranks. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
12/7/202117 minutes, 23 seconds
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Abortion Debate Reaches Crescendo at Supreme Court

The case that could overturn the Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade decision that recognized abortion as a constitutional right will come before the nine justices tomorrow morning. On today's episode of On The Merits, our weekly legal news podcast, we explain the stakes behind Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health and why abortion rights activists are so pessimistic about their chances to even maintain the status quo. We're joined on the podcast by Kimberly Robinson, Bloomberg Law's Supreme Court reporter and, due to social distancing restrictions, one of the few people who will actually be inside the courtroom for Wednesday's arguments. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
11/30/202117 minutes, 30 seconds
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GE Breakup Presents Tons of Logistical, Legal Issues

General Electric, the 13-decade-old conglomerate founded by Thomas Edison, announced plans earlier this month to split up into three separate companies focused on aviation, health care, and energy. Whether this will ultimately lead to greater profits is unclear, but one thing is certain: breaking up a company of this size and stature poses numerous legal and logistical hurdles. On today's episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, three reporters from three different desks in our newsroom discuss the most significant issues that could arise as GE pursues this move. Kyle Jahner, who covers IP issues for Bloomberg Law, talks about how GE's numerous patents, trade secrets, and brands could be divvied up. Environmental reporter Daniel Moore talks about who will inherit GE's sizable cleanup liabilities and what this breakup will mean for renewable energy. And Bloomberg Tax's Michael Rapoport tells us whether GE will be able to achieve tax-free status from the IRS for the spinoff. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
11/16/202117 minutes, 13 seconds
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Reexamining the Bar Exam

The bar exam has been around in some form or another since the 1920s. However, it could be time for a change. The pandemic created challenges in administering the test. Some states allowed diploma privilege, others made significant changes. Many critics think it's time to change the bar exam permanently—or even do away with it altogether. Our sister podcast, [Un]Common Law, will release the first episode in a three-part series on the state of the bar exam for lawyers, where it is now, and where it could be heading in the future. The host of that series, Adam Allington, joins On The Merits this week to talk about this project and about the pros and cons of the different plans to remake the final barrier to becoming a practicing lawyer. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
11/9/202117 minutes, 48 seconds
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Beveridge's Ben Wilson Speaks From Giants' Shoulders

Ben Wilson has been affectionately described as the dean of black partners within Big Law. But that title doesn't begin to do justice to the Beveridge & Diamond chairman, who announced his retirement last month after 45 years in the legal profession. Wilson has mentored generations of Black and other diverse attorneys. And, in 2008, founded the Diverse Partners Network, which he intends to continue to lead after retirement, renamed as the Diverse Lawyers Network. He is also the founder of the African American Managing Partners Network, tight-knit network of African American leaders of major law firms that began in 2009. Lisa Helem, Bloomberg Law's Executive Editor for Strategic Initiatives, spoke with Wilson this week for nearly an hour about leadership, the state of diversity in the legal profession and the Civil Rights attorneys who motivated him to seek out the law as a career. We're going to air an extended version of this interview later this month as a special episode of our award-winning "Black Lawyers Speak" series, hosted on our sister podcast, UnCommon Law But today, for our weekly news podcast, "On The Merits," we present a preview from Lisa and Ben's conversation. Wilson speaks about his upbringing in the segregated South and the work needed in order for the legal industry to fully diversify. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
11/3/202112 minutes, 57 seconds
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Can Convicted 'Varsity Blues' Parents Win on Appeal?

Operation Varsity Blues was the code name given to the investigation of parents that spent millions of dollars to increase their children's chances of getting into universities like the University of Southern California. Many of the parents who were charged entered guilty pleas, but the first two to stand trial were convicted earlier this month. Patricia Hurtado covers the courts for Bloomberg News. She has been following the Varsity Blues cases since the indictments were announced more than two years ago. She says the convicted parents may have a strong case at the appellate level. One of their arguments will likely be that they didn't receive a fair trial because the man who orchestrated the bribery ring, William Singer, never took the stand. Hurtado joins our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, to talk about the significance of the Varsity Blues case and the issues that are likely to come up on appeal. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
10/26/202118 minutes, 18 seconds
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Big Law's Addiction to 'Prestige' Numbed by Pandemic

For his 100th column for Bloomberg Law, Roy Strom looked back at the seismic changes that have taken place in the legal industry during the pandemic. He says the pandemic has shown many of the country's biggest law firms that there is much more to Big Law than chasing prestige. Law firms are now opening satellite offices in Salt Lake City and Austin, Texas. And we've seen Big Law continue to move away from lockstep compensation, which many in the industry now consider an anachronism. Additionally, the mindset of prizing revenue above all else is starting to fade as well. Roy Strom joins this week's episode of On The Merits to talk about Big Law two years later. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
10/19/202117 minutes, 35 seconds
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Bonus: Future of Wages for Disabled Workers

On this special weekend episode of the podcast, Bloomberg Law’s Paige Smith reads her recent story on how laws that allow companies to pay disabled workers below minimum wage may be changing soon.
10/16/202113 minutes, 26 seconds
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Can Employers Ask Candidates About Vaccination Status?

When some companies started implementing vaccine mandates on their employees, it was only a matter of time before they applied the same rules to their job applicants as well. According to a recent survey, nearly one third of employers are now disqualifying candidates who cannot or will not confirm that they've received a Covid-19 vaccine. Bloomberg Law's Erin Mulvaney is reporting on this trend. Her sources say discriminating against unvaccinated candidates likely doesn't violate civil or disability rights laws. But they also say it does matter when in the hiring process an employer asks an applicant about their status. Mulvaney discusses the legal issues around hiring and vaccines in this week's episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
10/5/202112 minutes, 44 seconds
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Supreme Court's Texas Abortion Ruling Spurs Lawsuits

The Supreme Court's bombshell 5 to 4 ruling this month on Texas's new abortion restrictions law was both an end and a beginning. It put an end to the hopes of abortion rights activists who wanted to overturn this law before it took effect, but it also marked the beginning of a frenzy of litigation aimed at getting this issue back before the court as quickly as possible. And the litigation has come from all sides, with plaintiffs as varied as the Department of Justice, Planned Parenthood, and two disbarred attorneys from Arkansas and Illinois. On today's episode of On The Merits, Bloomberg Law reporters Lydia Wheeler and Mary Anne Pazanowski help us sort through where many of the abortion lawsuits are coming from, and which ones have the best chances of making it back to the Supreme Court. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
9/28/202116 minutes, 5 seconds
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Alan Albright, the Go-To Judge for Patent Cases, Speaks

As recently as 2018, the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas received only 90 patent cases or 2.5% of the patent cases filed nationwide. However, after Judge Alan Albright took the bench in Waco, Texas, his federal court has become a hotbed of patent litigation. Just last year, Albright saw nearly 800 new patent suits filed. On this episode of our podcast, On The Merits, Albright speaks to Bloomberg Law reporter Matthew Bultman about why patent plaintiffs are so eager to litigate in his court, and why other judges don't seem to want to try these cases. Albright also talks about the changes he's made during the pandemic and why he expects many of them to become permanent. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
9/21/202116 minutes, 34 seconds
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How Mandates, Covid-19 Testing, and Surcharges Work

Delta Air Lines grabbed some headlines late last month with its plan to encourage its employees to get vaccinated against Covid-19. It would not fire employees who refused to get the shot, but would rather impose on them a $200 monthly surcharge. Then, last week, President Joe Biden made even bigger news by announcing a sweeping plan to require vaccination for all federal employees, federal contractors, and many health care industry workers. On this week's episode of On The Merits, our weekly legal news podcast, Bloomberg Law labor reporters Robert Iafolla and Paige Smith break down the implications of these fast moving developments and discuss what the future of vaccines and employment will look like. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
9/14/202116 minutes, 3 seconds
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Avoiding a Britney Spears' Conservatorship Situation

Since 2008, Britney Spears’ life has been controlled by a conservatorship. Renewed interest and public support for ending the conservatorship followed the release of a documentary film, Framing Britney Spears, which highlighted the efforts of the #FreeBritney movement. But how did it come to this? What role can trusts and estates attorneys play in helping high net worth clients avoid ending up in Spears' position? Barbara Grayson, a partner with the firm Willkie Farr & Gallagher, and Joshua Rubenstein, a partner at Katten, talk to us in this episode of On The Merits about what went wrong in the Spears case, the soft skills needed to be a trusts and estates attorney, and why Big Law has largely left the practice area. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
8/31/202110 minutes, 25 seconds
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California's Lawsuit Against Activision Blizzard

The video game maker Activision Blizzard, Inc. is being sued for gender discrimination and harassment. The $60 billion company, behind games that include Call of Duty and World of Warcraft, isn't being sued by female employees in this suit though. They're being sued by the state of California. California's Department of Fair Employment and Housing says its two-year investigation into Activision Blizzard found a "frat boy" culture where its female workers are regularly subjected to sexual banter and jokes about rape, among other forms of harassment. The female employees were also held back from promotions, paid less than their male coworkers, and criticized for leaving to pick up their children from daycare, according to the suit. On this episode of On The Merits, Maeve Allsup, our California correspondent, talks about why the state brought the hammer down on the video game maker, and why the involvement of a government regulator could represent a turning point.  Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
8/24/202117 minutes
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Lydia Wheeler reads her story about long-covid victims struggles with insurance

On this special weekend episode of On The Merits, reporter Lydia Wheeler reads her story about the difficulties some long-Covid victims are facing with insurance claims. Click here to read the story in print.
8/24/202110 minutes, 50 seconds
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Bar Exam Has Got to Go, Law School Dean Says

Several states opted to temporarily suspend their bar exams when the pandemic broke out last year. This led many in the legal community to question why the exam exists in the first place. Now at least one state is seriously considering alternative ways to certify new law school grads. The Oregon Supreme Court is currently weighing a proposal that would make the bar exam just one of several options aspiring attorneys there can choose to earn their license. On today's episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, we hear from Brian Gallini, one of the people who drafted that proposal. Gallini, the dean of the Willamette University College of Law, talks about why he thinks the bar exam should be scrapped altogether but why replacing it with so-called "diploma privilege" isn't a good option either.audio embed goes here Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
8/3/202119 minutes, 44 seconds
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The Morgan Stanley Memo: What A Law Firm Client Wants

Morgan Stanley's chief legal officer issued a memo earlier this month that has the legal world buzzing. In it, Eric Grossman all but demanded that the law firms working with the financial industry giant end their pandemic work-from-home policies. News of an in-house counsel dictating to outside law firms the locations from which their lawyers should be working (news that was first reported by Bloomberg Law) has ricocheted across the legal world. In this episode of On The Merits, reporters Brian Baxter and Meghan Tribe discuss why Grossman sent this memo, whether Morgan Stanley can actually force its firms to end remote work, and how all this could affect big law recruitment. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
7/27/202115 minutes, 55 seconds
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Voter Fraud Prosecution Data Undermines Claims

A team of Bloomberg reporters has been reaching out to elections officials in every state for months to try to get a sense of how often voting fraud actually happens. In all, they found roughly 200 instances over the past two years, where people were charged or convicted for alleged voting fraud. On today's episode of On The Merits, we hear from the lead reporter on this team, Alex Ebert, about voting fraud prosecutions in America. Ebert also talks about the state officials from both parties who worry the current discussion on voting fraud is eroding faith in the electoral system. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
7/20/202116 minutes, 54 seconds
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Rudy Giuliani's Law License Suspension, Explained

Rudy Giuliani, the former mayor of New York and once the top federal prosecutor in Manhattan, has been disciplined over his role in the effort to overturn the 2020 presidential election. Other lawyers who represented the President could also get hit with sanctions. What does it mean to have your law license suspended? What can and can't lawyers do when they've been sanctioned? And why are these attorneys facing discipline when their clients are, by and large, happy with their work? For answers, we turn to Bloomberg Law legal ethics reporter Melissa Heelan. She breaks down the distinction between license suspension and disbarment and explores why, what these attorneys are accused of, makes their cases so unique. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
7/13/202113 minutes, 33 seconds
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Amy Chua's Side of the Story: The Yale Law Prof Speaks

Amy Chua, the Yale Law School professor and self-described "tiger mom," is making headlines again amid a battle with her Ivy League employer. On this episode of On The Merits, Chua talks to Bloomberg Law columnist Vivia Chen about why she finds herself embroiled in controversy now and how challenging it's been for her family. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
7/7/202116 minutes, 48 seconds
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Big Law Sees Risks, Rewards in Police Monitor Roles

In April, Attorney General Merrick Garland announced that the Department of Justice would investigate policing practices in Minneapolis and Louisville, Ky., following the deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor. Now many law enforcement experts expect to see cities enter into consent decrees to address civil rights violations at the hands of the police, among other operational reforms. Consent decrees present an interesting opportunity for some law firms. In the past, decrees have often required that outside firms are hired to monitor the conduct of the police department and make recommendations for reforms. Big firms like Venable and Sheppard Mullin have served this role in some cities and others, like DLA Piper, are trying to get into the game. On this episode of On The Merits, Bloomberg Law's Ayanna Alexander tells us why some Big Law firms are taking on this work, and the unique challenges that firms face when they do. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
6/29/202116 minutes, 13 seconds
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Judge's Anger Can Only Be Expressed Via Emojis

On this weekend edition of our legal news podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Law editor Carmen Castro-Pagan tells us about a federal judge who grew so frustrated by a protracted discovery dispute that her feelings could only be expressed through with one simple character: 🤯 Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
6/26/20216 minutes, 50 seconds
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Associates Raking in the Big Bucks But at What Cost?

The country's biggest, most profitable law firms—think Milbank, Davis Polk, Paul Weiss, and Cravath—are falling all over themselves to increase the salaries of their associates with many bumping up the wages of first-year associates to more than $200,000. On this episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Law's Meghan Tribe explains what's driving this attorney salary arms race, and she talks about how much higher associate salaries can possibly go. She also says that, while these just-out-of-law-school lawyers may be earning top dollar, their lives are far from luxurious. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
6/22/202114 minutes, 48 seconds
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Trump’s Top Lawyers Are Slow to Land in Private Sector

Attorneys who leave the federal government after an administration change usually get snatched up quickly by Big Law firms and corporations. But a Bloomberg Law analysis found that hasn't been the case this year. Nearly six months after Donald Trump left office, more than 80% of top lawyers in Trump’s administration have landed somewhere since he left office, even if their roles are part time or not their first choice. That's according to a new story from Bloomberg Law's John Hughes. On this episode of our weekly podcast, On The Merits, Hughes talks about how he collected data on these attorneys, what this data means, and why Washington's famous revolving door may be slowing down for Trump administration alumni.  Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
6/15/202113 minutes, 50 seconds
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Bobby Magill Reads His Story on Mining and Trump's Waters Rule

On this special weekend episode of On The Merits, reporter Bobby Magill reads his story about the rush to obtain a federal mining permit before an expected Biden administration environmental regulatory change. Click here to read the story in print.
6/12/20218 minutes, 57 seconds
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Some Employers Mandate Covid-19 Vaccine and Get Sued

Can your employer require you to get a Covid-19 vaccine? Many legal experts say yes, but very few employers are actually taking that step. Some, of the few who have, are now facing litigation. On this episode of On The Merits, Bloomberg Law's Robert Iafolla talks about a few of the recent lawsuits challenging employer vaccine mandates. He says, even if they get tossed out of court, they're already having a significant impact. Have feedback on this episode of On The Merits? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
6/8/202112 minutes, 50 seconds
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Eric Holder on Diversifying the Judiciary

Earlier this year, our companion podcast, [Un]Common Law, published a series looking at the experiences of African American lawyers and judges working in the legal industry—which, to this day, remains one of the least diverse professions in America. Now, more than a year since George Floyd’s murder, and the wave of soul-searching in the legal industry that followed, 16 of the nation’s largest law firms, nine of which are in the Am Law 200, still do not have even a single Black partner according to a report from the American Lawyer. Back in January we interviewed former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, now a partner with Washington DC-based, Covington & Burling as part of [Un]Common Law's “Black Lawyers Speak Series," and today we are releasing the full Q&A as a bonus episode from that series. 
6/1/202121 minutes, 26 seconds
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Taylor Swift, 'Lion King' Cited in Judge's Opinions

On this holiday weekend edition of Bloomberg Law's legal news podcast, On The Merits, we hear about a federal judge who likes to pepper his opinions with references to Taylor Swift, "The Lion King," and other bits of pop culture ephemera. Carmen Castro-Pagan, an editor on our Legal Intelligence desk, talks about the creative writing style of Judge Joshua D. Wolson and about why some judges like to spice up their opinions this way.
5/29/20218 minutes, 1 second
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Behind the Music: Lawyers, Hip Hop Artists & IP Rights

Entertainment law is not quite as glitzy or glamorous as you may have heard. That’s especially the case for music industry lawyers who work with up and coming hip hop artists. On our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, we learn what it’s really like behind the music from lawyers Desiree Talley, Gerard Anthony, Karl Fowlkes, and Tiffany Ballard. They say attorneys who represent artists must be hawk-like in guarding their clients’ intellectual property rights. The attorneys talk about fending off predatory executives and educating their own clients’ on the legal issues they face. They also explain how racial issues are never far from their minds, especially given the music industry’s legacy of mistreating black artists.
5/25/202110 minutes, 27 seconds
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Holly Barker Reads Her Story on Aging Lawyers and Dementia

On this special weekend episode of On The Merits, reporter Holly Barker reads her story about what happens to aging lawyers when they get dementia, and what happens to their clients. Click here to read the story in print.
5/22/202118 minutes, 4 seconds
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Aging Lawyers and Dementia: A Looming Problem

There are currently more than 160,000 practicing lawyers over the age of 65 in the U.S., a 50% increase from just a decade ago. But this age group is also more at risk of Alzheimer's disease or other forms of dementia. That can have serious consequences for a lawyer's clients, especially if that attorney is a solo practitioner or works in a small firm. On this episode of On The Merits, Bloomberg Law reporter Holly Barker talks about her recent reporting on lawyers that are unaware of, or are in denial about, their own cognitive impairment. Barker says most state bars are struggling to figure out how to help these attorneys gracefully exit the profession while protecting their clients.
5/18/202115 minutes, 38 seconds
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Readers Reply to Column Critical of 'Old White Men'

Bloomberg Law columnist Vivia Chen recently wrote about a failed attempt to rank law schools based on diversity. She started her column by saying "old White men" need to get out of the way on issues like this. That line elicited some passionate responses from several Bloomberg Law readers. On this bonus weekend episode of our podcast, On The Merits, we talk to Vivia about the responses, and also hear from one of an "old White man" who wrote to her about the column.
5/15/20217 minutes, 31 seconds
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'Long Covid' Exposes Mental Health Care Frustrations

Just accessing, let alone paying for, mental health care was difficult in the U.S. even before the pandemic. Now, especially for people suffering from "long Covid," the situation is dire. On this episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, we speak with Bloomberg Law's Lydia Wheeler about her latest reporting that examines the financial and policy implications for Covid long haulers. She explains why the protracted version of the Covid-19 disease is causing a spike in demand for mental health care and what types of policy changes are on the horizon to help the U.S. meet demand.
5/4/202114 minutes, 30 seconds
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Children of H-1B Visa Holders Hope for Legislation

The holders of H-1B visas, who work in tech, science, and other highly skilled occupations, can bring their children to the U.S. legally. However, as soon as those children turn 21, they lose their dependent status and risk deportation to a country they may have no recollection of ever having lived in. On this episode of On The Merits, Bloomberg Law's Genevieve Douglas talks about the difficult choices these so-called "legal Dreamers" have to make and the bill, which passed in the House, that could solve their problems.
4/27/202112 minutes, 1 second
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Do Employees Have a Right to Work From Home?

The ADA requires employers to give disabled workers "reasonable accommodations" in the workplace. But, when it comes to disputes over work-from-home arrangements, employers almost always won with the argument that the job can't be performed remotely. That, as you might imagine, has changed. On this episode of our weekly legal news podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Law's Erin Mulvaney tells us about how the pandemic may have given employees the upper hand in suits over working from home. (2:50) Also, we hear from Bloomberg Law editor Rob Tricchinelli about how an aspiring condiment impresario was able to salvage a partial victory on appeal after losing big in his suit against a corporate ketchup giant. (13:10)
4/20/202119 minutes, 11 seconds
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Judge Wallach Pulls No Punches in Exit Interview

Federal appellate court judges rarely speak to the press. Fortunately for us, Judge Evan Wallach, a nine-year veteran of the U.S Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, who recently announced he will be taking senior status at the end of May, granted an exclusive interview to Bloomberg Law's Perry Cooper. On this episode of On The Merits, Cooper talks about her surprise at how candid Wallach was during their interview, and also about the nakedly partisan reason Wallach gave for why he's taking senior status, a form of semi-retirement, now. (3:05) Also, Bloomberg Law editor Carmen Castro-Pagan tells us about another judge who, in dismissing what he saw as a frivolous lawsuit, leaned hard on the boxing metaphors. Really hard. (14:42)
4/13/202121 minutes, 21 seconds
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Gig Economy's Future Looks Less Rosy in California

The predictions from a few years ago that the so-called "gig economy" would take over the country are looking a little shakier now. That's because California and other states have enacted laws that force many gig apps to classify their users as employees. On this episode of On The Merits, Bloomberg Law's Maeve Allsup talks about how, despite a pro-gig economy ballot initiative last year, many of these apps are still subject to California's employment laws. (3:10) Also, we take a look at the ongoing trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, who is charged with the murder of George Floyd. Kristen Gibbons Feden, a former Pennsylvania assistant district attorney who tried and convicted Bill Cosby, talks to us about how to prosecute a trial that's receiving intense media attention. (12:53)
4/6/202122 minutes, 36 seconds
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Warren Buffett's Company Runs Without In-House Lawyers

Berkshire Hathaway is unusual in a lot of ways, including the fact that it doesn't have a general counsel or even an in-house legal team. Today on our weekly podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Law's Brian Baxter explains why Warren Buffett's holding company exclusively uses an outside law firm and how that firm has benefited from its relationship to The Oracle of Omaha. (3:12) Also, Bloomberg Law legal reporter Jacklyn Wille tells us about the footnotes of a federal judge in California that are, depending on how you look at it, either extremely passive aggressive or remarkably empathetic. (12:18)
3/30/202119 minutes, 25 seconds
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Kirkland & Ellis Dominated Bankruptcy in 2020; Anti-Asian racism and the legal industry.

For many businesses, 2020 was a truly awful year—but that was not the case for Kirkland & Ellis’s bankruptcy practice. On today’s episode of our podcast, On The Merits, business of law reporter Roy Strom talks about his analysis of bankruptcy data that shows Kirkland handled a tremendous share of the many major bankruptcies that were filed last year. (2:36) Also, our new columnist Vivia Chen on the necessary and long overdue anti-Asian racism discussion happening now in the U.S. and how it intersects with the legal industry. (12:03)
3/23/202119 minutes, 14 seconds
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Bar Exams Facing Existential Crises After Pandemic

State bar exams are getting some tweaks and may be fully overhauled in the near future. On this week’s episode of our podcast, On The Merits, Bloomberg Law’s Sam Skolnik talks about how emergency changes made to state bar exams, in response to the pandemic, have many thinking that a wholesale revision of how the exams are administered may not be a bad idea. (2:48) Also, legal editor Carmen Castro-Pagan talks about the ousted CEO of a company who lost a trademark suit with his former employer, and then also lost the patience of the judge hearing his case. (14:54)
3/16/202120 minutes, 33 seconds
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Tipped Workers Face Long Odds in Minimum Wage Fight

This week's episode of our new weekly legal podcast, On The Merits, explores the push to increase the minimum wage for tipped workers. The hourly wage for tipped workers, $2.13, hasn't gone up in decades and is $5.12 lower than for non-tipped workers. (3:01) We also get a lesson in negligence while learning about a casino pool party accident that led to an embarrassing benchslap. (12:14)
3/9/202118 minutes, 36 seconds
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Covid Vaccine & Personal Data: Does HIPAA Still Matter?

Our new weekly podcast, On The Merits features some of the best reporting from across the Bloomberg Law newsroom. For the inaugural episode, we learn that states are sharing reams of sensitive, personally identifiable information about Covid-19 vaccine recipients with the CDC, all while staying in compliance with HIPAA. Bloomberg Law's Jacquie Lee explains how the famously strict medical privacy law has become much more flexible during this public health emergency, and what the CDC is doing to try to maintain some level of privacy for those who receive the vaccine (3:38).
3/2/202120 minutes, 31 seconds
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Introducing: On The Merits from Bloomberg Law

Introducing "On The Merits," a new weekly legal news podcast from Bloomberg Law.
2/22/20211 minute, 17 seconds
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Sally Yates: Live from Bloomberg Law's In-House Forum

A live interview with Sally Yates, former deputy attorney general at the U.S. Department of Justice, exploring the current state of risk for public and private companies. Yates is interviewed by David Westin, an anchor at Bloomberg TV and former general counsel of Capital Cities/ABC. Sponsors: Epiq www.epiqglobal.com/ Bloomberg Law www.bloomberglaw.com/ More Information: Big Law Business https://biglawbusiness.com/sally-yates-live-from-bloomberg-laws-in-house-forum
11/23/201829 minutes, 53 seconds
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Richard Nixon's Big Law Years in NYC

Josh Block is joined by legal journalist, Victor Li, the author of a new book about Richard Nixon's time as a law firm partner in New York City. In between his loss in the 1962 gubernatorial election in California and the 1968 presidential campaign, Nixon was a rainmaking partner at the Wall Street law firm, Nixon, Mudge, Rose, Guthrie & Alexander. In “Nixon in New York: How Wall Street Helped Richard Nixon Win the White House,” Li chronicles how Nixon’s time as a practicing lawyer, including arguing a case before the Supreme Court, helped pave the way for his political comeback. Sponsors: Epiq www.epiqglobal.com/ Bloomberg Law www.bloomberglaw.com/ More Information: Big Law Business https://biglawbusiness.com/ Show Notes: Richard Nixon’s concession speech following his loss in the 1962 California gubernatorial election. https://youtu.be/JA1edgj1U5E Leonard Garment on Charlie Rose speaking about his book, “Crazy Rhythm: My Journey from Brooklyn, Jazz, and Wall Street to Nixon’s White House, Watergate, and Beyond…” https://charlierose.com/videos/766 Oral arguments in Time v. Hill, the Supreme Court case Richard Nixon argued. https://www.oyez.org/cases/1965/22 The New York Times account of the collapse of Nixon’s former law firm, from October 1, 1995, “The Mudge Rose Firm Enters the Tar Pit of Legal History.” https://www.nytimes.com/1995/10/01/nyregion/the-mudge-rose-firm-enters-the-tar-pit-of-legal-history.html Victor Li’s Richard Nixon blog. http://victor-li.com/the-nixon-blog/
8/23/201835 minutes, 26 seconds
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Making ‘RBG,’ the Documentary About Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

After Ruth Bader Ginsburg graduated from Columbia Law School in 1959, tied for first in her class, she could not get a job as an associate in big law. As her classmate Professor Arthur R. Miller tells it, a partner at a prestigious firm was told about the brightest student in his class but, when her gender was mentioned, the partner wouldn’t even consider her. Which law firm? Miller isn’t saying. “He wouldn’t name the New York firm. It was our impression that it was a big name law firm in New York who’s name might still ring a bell,” Julie Cohen, co-director of a new documentary about Justice Ginsburg, told Big Law Business's Josh Block. Big law may not have been part of Ginsburg’s path, but not practicing at a law firm clearly did not impede her professional progress. It is well known that Justice Ginsburg became the second woman to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court. Her pop culture bona fides, established after her famous dissenting opinions, include a recurring segment on Saturday Night Live’s Weekend Update, and memes including the play on the name of rapper, The Notorious B.I.G. However, less well known is the path Ruth Bader Ginsburg took, including her years as as a lawyer, arguing six gender discrimination cases before the Supreme Court, winning five of them. In January 2015, filmmakers Julie Cohen and Betsy West had the idea of filling in those gaps by making a feature documentary about Ginsburg. Their film, "RBG," was released in select theaters today. In this podcast interview with the directors, they tell Block about Justice Ginsburg and their experience making the film. Sponsors: Epiq https://www.epiqglobal.com/ Bloomberg Law www.bloomberglaw.com/ More Information: Big Law Business https://biglawbusiness.com/
5/4/201835 minutes, 28 seconds
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Jad Abumrad on Making Supreme Court Cases Dance

Jad Abumrad is the executive producer and creator of More Perfect, a podcast that explores Supreme Court cases and tries to explain the impact of the Court’s decisions on the lives of Americans. The challenge is making the cases “come alive,” Abumrad told Josh Block of Big Law Business. “Can I make it feel exciting and visceral? but also honor the complexity of the arguments?” In this podcast interview, Abumrad, also the creator of Radiolab, tells Block about More Perfect’s unique approach to covering the Court, what he’d ask Justice Sonia Sotomayor if he had the chance, and teases the next season of the podcast (which is coming sooner than listeners might expect). Sponsors: Epiq http://epiqglobal.com/en-us Bloomberg Law https://www.bloomberglaw.com/ More Information: Big Law Business https://biglawbusiness.com/
2/28/201827 minutes, 16 seconds
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Live from Big Law Business Summit-West

Law firm leaders from Wilson Sonsini and Orrick were joined by in-house leaders from Workday and Malwarebytes to talk about the state of the legal industry at this month’s Big Law Business Summit-West. This episode of the our podcast was recorded live at the Summit. The panel was moderated by Michael Hytha of Bloomberg News and includes Ed Brown, ‎Vice President and General Counsel, Malwarebytes; Katie Martin, Chair of the Board, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati; Jim Shaughnessy, Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary, Workday; and Mitch Zuklie, Chairman and CEO, Orrick. Big Law Business https://biglawbusiness.com/ Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes. itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-l…d1074067483?mt=2 Want to receive more stories like this in your inbox every morning? Subscribe to our daily newsletter! about.bna.com/big-law-business-newsletter Podcast Sponsors DMX www.epiqsystems.com/how-we-help/edi…covery/dmx-demo Bloomberg Law www.bloomberglaw.com
11/30/201728 minutes, 48 seconds
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Why Women Leave Big Law to Start Their Own Firms (Episode 2 of 2)

"Starting in the 2000s it was women who had already made partner, and who were not leaving [big law] for work-life balance reasons, but were leaving for business reasons and I don’t think that trend is going to change." – Nicole Galli, former litigation partner at Pepper Hamilton, who now has her own small firm. In the second of our two-episode podcast series, Josh Block of Big Law Business explores why many women lawyers are leaving big law and starting their own law firms. Galli and Stephanie Russell-Kraft, who recently reported on the topic, share their insights. Subscribe to On The Merits on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Stitcher, Megaphone, or Audible. Podcast Sponsors: DMX http://www.epiqsystems.com/how-we-help/ediscovery/project-based-ediscovery/dmx-demo Bloomberg Law www.bloomberglaw.com
9/18/201722 minutes, 55 seconds
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Why Women Leave Big Law to Start Their Own Firms (Episode 1 of 2)

Why are many women lawyers choosing to leave big law, and starting their own law firms, even after they make partner? In the first of a two-episode podcast series, Big Law Business's Josh Block explores that question with Stephanie Russell-Kraft, who recently reported on the topic, and Nicole Galli, a former partner at Pepper Hamilton, who now has her own small firm. Subscribe to On The Merits on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Stitcher, Megaphone, or Audible. Podcast Sponsors: DMX http://www.epiqsystems.com/how-we-help/ediscovery/project-based-ediscovery/dmx-demo Bloomberg Law www.bloomberglaw.com
9/18/201729 minutes, 43 seconds
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Big Law Banker ‘Pleasantly Surprised’ By Law Firm Financials

There’s some good news if you’re an equity partner at a large law firm. Based on the findings of a survey of firms released by Wells Fargo Private Bank’s Legal Specialty Group, equity partners should see “healthy levels of profit” this year, according to Joe Mendola, a senior director of sales with the group. However, Mendola also warned that this continues to be “a challenging time” for many firms in the second hundred of the Am Law 200, and we should expect consolidation to continue in the coming years. Mendola visited the Big Law Business office on Wednesday to record an interview with Josh Block about the findings of his group’s Mid-Year Check-In, a survey of financial measures of approximately 135 law firms. About 60 Am Law 100 firms participated in the survey, including a “high percentage” of the Am Law 50. Big Law Business https://bol.bna.com/ Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes. https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-law-business/id1074067483?mt=2 Want to receive more stories like this in your inbox every morning? Subscribe to our daily newsletter! http://about.bna.com/big-law-business-newsletter Podcast Sponsors DMX www.epiqsystems.com/how-we-help/edi…covery/dmx-demo Bloomberg Law www.bloomberglaw.com
9/1/201720 minutes, 7 seconds
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Judge Scheindlin on ‘Gender Disparity’ and Imbalance in Big Law

Women represent private parties in civil litigation just 18.5% of the time in New York according to a New York State Bar Association report released earlier this month. Judge Shira Scheindlin backed up those findings during a recent podcast recording: “what I witnessed in the courtroom was a great gender disparity in privately retained counsel.” Judge Scheindlin, a former Federal District Court Judge, was one of the members of the task force that prepared the report. Last week she also published, “Female Lawyers Can Talk, Too” an op-ed about the report that ran in The New York Times and clearly struck a nerve; it received 274 comments before the Times closed commenting. Earlier this week, Josh Block travelled to Stroock & Stroock & Lavan, the law firm where Scheindlin is Of Counsel, to record this podcast interview with her about the report, her own career experiences, and her thoughts about the continued disparity and gender imbalance in big law. Big Law Business https://bol.bna.com/ Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes. https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-law-business/id1074067483?mt=2 Podcast Sponsors DMX http://www.epiqsystems.com/how-we-help/ediscovery/project-based-ediscovery/dmx-demo Bloomberg Law https://www.bloomberglaw.com Show Notes If Not Now, When? Achieving Equality for Women Attorneys in the Courtroom and in ADR http://www.nysba.org/WomensTaskForceReport/ Female Lawyers Can Talk, Too https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/08/opinion/female-lawyers-women-judges.html?_r=0 Stark Gender Divide Between Private and Public Sector Cases in New York https://bol.bna.com/stark-gender-divide-between-private-and-public-sector-cases-in-new-york/ Judge Scheindlin on Women’s Absence in Courts https://bol.bna.com/judge-scheindlin-on-womens-absence-in-courts/ Mistaken For The Court Reporter: Litigating As A Woman https://bol.bna.com/mistaken-for-the-court-reporter-litigating-as-a-woman/
8/17/201733 minutes, 39 seconds
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How Marc Kasowitz’s Law Firm Does Business

Kasowitz Benson Torres has been representing Donald Trump, in various matters, for more than 15 years. In May, when the firm’s founding partner Marc Kasowitz was chosen to represent the president in the probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election, the lawyer and firm were thrust into the spotlight. In this episode we take a deep dive on Kasowitz Benson. Josh Block talks with Bob Van Voris of Bloomberg News, and New York Law Journal’s Christine Simmons. Big Law Business https://bol.bna.com/ Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-l…d1074067483?mt=2 Sponsored by Zapproved https://www.zapproved.com/e-discovery-resources/events/prex17/ Bloomberg Law www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW
7/14/201726 minutes, 20 seconds
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Not All Law Firms ‘Are Going to Make it’ Says Morgan Stanley’s Top Lawyer

Leaders from Venable, Latham & Watkins, Morgan Stanley, and Capital One talk about the state of the legal industry. This episode was recorded live at the Big Law Business Summit, and moderated by Bloomberg Businessweek’s Megan Murphy. Topics include talent management, how corporations choose law firms, automation in the legal industry, pressure on the law firm economic model, whether law firms are doing enough to achieve diversity, the millennial generation, and how the business of law is changing during the Trump administration. Guests include: Matthew Cooper, Executive Vice President, Head of Legal, Capital One Financial Eric Grossman, Chief Legal Officer and Managing Director, Morgan Stanley Stuart Ingis, Chairman, Venable LLP Jamie Wine, Partner and Global Litigation and Trial Chair, Latham & Watkins Big Law Business https://bol.bna.com/ Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-l…d1074067483?mt=2 Sponsored by DMX www.epiqsystems.com/DMX Bloomberg Law www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW
5/31/201743 minutes, 52 seconds
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Judge Rakoff: “Fierce” Competition Has Changed Law Firms For The Worse

U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff thinks increased competition has had an impact on law firms, for the worse. “It is to the point that the professional ethics and the professional responsibilities of the firms have been affected,” Rakoff told Big Law Business, explaining that firms, in order to keep clients, are willing to endorse risky behavior. In the podcast interview with Big Law Business’s Casey Sullivan, Rakoff laid out his concerns about how attorneys in his courtroom have placated clients, to the detriment of their legal judgment, in order to retain business. This, he said, has resulted in over aggressive legal tactics that undermine the credibility of lawyers. In the podcast, Rakoff speaks about the business of law, his career path, his involvement in an influential insider trading ruling, as well as his biggest pet peeves of lawyers who appear before him in court. Interview begins at 4:16. Big Law Business https://bol.bna.com/ Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-l…d1074067483?mt=2 Sponsored by DMX http://www.epiqsystems.com/DMX Bloomberg Law www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW
5/3/201749 minutes, 42 seconds
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Hogan Lovells’ CEO & Akin Gump’s Chair Interview Each Other

For the latest episode of the Big Law Business podcast, Josh Block and Casey Sullivan let the leaders of two top grossing law firms take over. This is the full-length audio version of our "Chairs on Chairs" series featuring Kim Koopersmith, of Akin Gump, and Steve Immelt, of Hogan Lovells, interviewing each other about the business of law. Topics include: the Trump administration and travel ban, Brexit’s impact on the industry, diversity and inclusion at large law firms, running a large law firm, crisis management, growing revenue in a time of flat demand for legal services, taking over for Bruce McLean at Akin Gump and Warren Gorrell at Hogan Lovells, law firm culture, millennial lawyers, flexible work schedules, legal technology, cybersecurity, leisure time for law firm leaders. Big Law Business: https://bol.bna.com/ Sponsored by Bloomberg Law: www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-l…d1074067483?mt=2
4/28/20171 hour, 19 minutes, 50 seconds
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Inside Jones Day: Cleveland, 1893 to Donald Trump

Jones Day's connection to Donald Trump has landed at least 14 of their lawyers positions in the administration. But the law firm stood out long before the Trump relationship. Jones Day has the most total lawyers working in the United States, according to the most recent ranking. In 2015, they hired 10 U.S. Supreme Court law clerks. And, perhaps most unique by today's standards, they have a management structure that gives almost all decision making authority to their managing partner, including decisions about compensation and who will be his successor. In this episode of the Big Law Business podcast, Josh Block does a deep dive on Jones Day with Bloomberg Businessweek's Paul Barrett, and Above the Law's David Lat. Big Law Business: https://bol.bna.com/ Sponsored by Bloomberg Law: www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-l…d1074067483?mt=2
3/17/201732 minutes, 20 seconds
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Journalist Who Broke Akin Gump Partner Arrest Story

It’s not often that lawyers from Big Law firms are arrested by the FBI, in disguise, accused of selling a whistleblower complaint. When our colleagues at Bloomberg News broke the news early yesterday, we knew we had a story that was about to blow-up in legal circles and beyond. On a day that shut down cities across the Northeast, Casey Sullivan trudged into our NYC studio to record this podcast and learn more about the arrest from Jef Feeley, one of the trio of reporters who broke the story. Big Law Business: BigLawBusiness.com Sponsored by Bloomberg Law: www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-l…d1074067483?mt=2
2/9/201715 minutes, 17 seconds
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Norton Rose Fulbright and Chadbourne & Parke: Megafirm About to Get Bigger?

Is another megafirm about to get even bigger? Yesterday, Norton Rose Fulbright and New York-based Chadbourne & Parke both confirmed that they were in discussions to merge. The combined law firm would have nearly 4,000 lawyers and about $2 billion in revenue. Josh Block and Casey Sullivan discuss the likely first candidate for biggest law firm merger of 2017. Sponsored by Bloomberg Law: www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-l…d1074067483?mt=2
2/3/201712 minutes, 22 seconds
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Death Row & Billable Hours: Balancing Pro Bono in Big Law

Alfred Dewayne Brown was sent to death row in 2005 for a crime he didn’t commit. The dedication of a Big Law associate, Brian Stolarz, to his pro bono representation of Brown helped exonerate him. The price Stolarz paid for the hours he put into the case cost him bonuses and the path to partnership. Stolarz, who wrote a book about his experience, Grace and Justice on Death Row, joins Josh Block and Casey Sullivan on the Big Law Business podcast. Sponsored by Bloomberg Law: www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-l…d1074067483?mt=2 Lawyer Who Helped Save Death Row Inmate Didn’t Make Partner - By Gabe Friedman https://bol.bna.com/lawyer-who-helped-save-death-row-inmate-didnt-make-partner/ Grace and Justice on Death Row: The Race against Time and Texas to Free an Innocent Man - By Brian W. Stolarz http://skyhorsepublishing.com/titles/11892-9781510715103-grace-and-justice-on-death-row
12/7/201632 minutes, 38 seconds
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Arnold & Porter and Kaye Scholer to Merge After All

Arnold & Porter and Kaye Scholer, after months of talks, announced today that they will merge effective January 1, 2017. The new firm will have roughly 1,000 lawyers and will be called Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer. Josh Block and Casey Sullivan discuss the largest law firm merger (so far) of 2016. Sponsored by Bloomberg Law: www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-l…d1074067483?mt=2
11/10/201618 minutes, 19 seconds
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Supreme Court Advocates Verrilli & Clement Join Big Law Firms

Former United States Solicitors General Paul Clement and Donald Verrilli are among the “top tier” of Supreme Court advocates, according to Greg Stohr who covers the Court for Bloomberg News. So, it’s big news that both announced in September that they are joining Big Law firms. In Clement’s case, he’s taking his whole boutique appellate firm, Bancroft, with him to Kirkland & Ellis. While, in Verrilli’s case, his return to Big Law was not quite as unexpected. The firm he joined however, Munger Tolles & Olson, was a surprise. Many observers expected Verrilli to rejoin his former firm, Jenner & Block. Stohr speaks with the hosts of the Big Law Business podcast, Josh Block and Casey Sullivan, about Clement, Verrilli, and what to expect as the new Supreme Court term begins. Sponsored by Bloomberg Law: www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-l…d1074067483?mt=2
10/4/201632 minutes, 8 seconds
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Gibson Dunn: The Firm You Call When You're In The Soup

It’s cliche to say, in today’s legal market, that only law firms that do “bet the ranch” litigation can charge top rates. Gibson Dunn isn’t just one of those “bet the ranch” type of firms. As Bloomberg Businessweek’s Paul Barrett notes, the firm has been called on by clients to replace both Jones Day and Skadden Arps: “when things kind of go bad and you need to be rescued, you call on Gibson Dunn to come up with some type of innovative strategy to get you out of the soup.” Once again we’re taking a full episode of the Big Law Business podcast to do a deep dive on a single law firm, Gibson Dunn. A firm that consistently ranks among the top in the U.S. in gross revenue, profits per partner, and revenue per lawyer. Their clients include Chevron, Apple, and even New Jersey Governor, Chris Christie. Paul Barrett, our guest for this episode, knows the firm well, having written extensively about Chevron’s legal battles in Ecuador in the pages of Businessweek and Bloomberg.com, and his book, Law of the Jungle. Sponsored by Bloomberg Law www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes. itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-l…d1074067483?mt=2 Discussed in this episode: What Do Chevron, Apple, and Chris Christie Have in Common? https://bol.bna.com/what-do-chevron-apple-and-chris-christie-have-in-common/ What’s Culture? No Bonuses to High-Ranking Gibson Dunn Partners https://bol.bna.com/whats-culture-no-bonuses-to-high-ranking-partners-at-gibson-dunn/ Chevron’s Pollution Victory Opens Door for Companies to Shirk Foreign Verdicts https://bol.bna.com/chevrons-pollution-victory-opens-door-for-companies-to-shirk-foreign-verdicts/ How Apple Will Fight U.S. Demand for Access to Attacker’s iPhone https://bol.bna.com/how-apple-will-fight-u-s-demand-for-access-to-attackers-iphone/ Ted Olson Tapped in Legal Battle Against LGBT Law In North Carolina https://bol.bna.com/ted-olson-tapped-in-legal-battle-against-lgbt-law-in-north-carolina/ K&L Gates and ‘The Shark Tank of Law Firms’ https://bol.bna.com/podcast-kl-gates-and-the-shark-tank-of-law-firms/
8/17/201641 minutes, 14 seconds
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Brexit's Toll on the Business of Law

Jeremy Hodges, of Bloomberg News, joins Casey Sullivan to discuss how Britain's vote to leave the European Union is affecting the business of law in the UK. Hodges provides an overview of the London legal market, the work (or lack thereof) that is coming to the biggest law firms as a result of Brexit, and big law mergers past and present. Brought to you by: Bloomberg Law www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes. itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-l…d1074067483?mt=2
7/15/201633 minutes, 56 seconds
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The Great Associate Salary Raises of 2016

2007. George W. Bush was President, Steve Jobs announced the first iPhone, Daniel Day-Lewis won an Oscar for There Will Be Blood, and across the legal industry, Big Law firms raised the base salary of their first-year associates to $160,000 from $145,000. It would be the last such raise until this month. Probably no other legal news site has covered the associate salary raises of 2016 as extensively as Above the Law, so we invited one of their editors, Joe Patrice to talk with Josh Block about the raises. Brought to you by: Bloomberg Law www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes. itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-l…d1074067483?mt=2 Discussed in this episode: Is Following Cravath’s Lead the Best Way to Set Salaries? https://bol.bna.com/is-following-cravaths-lead-the-best-way-to-set-salaries/ $180K Associates? Not at This Firm, Says Chair https://bol.bna.com/is-following-cravaths-lead-the-best-way-to-set-salaries/ Will Associate Salary Raises Be Billed to Clients? https://bol.bna.com/is-following-cravaths-lead-the-best-way-to-set-salaries/ Breaking: NY To $180K!!! Cravath Raises Associate Base Salaries!!! (Above the Law) http://abovethelaw.com/2016/06/breaking-ny-to-180k-cravath-raises-associate-base-salaries/ The Comprehensive Partner’s Guide To Associate Raises (Above the Law) http://abovethelaw.com/2016/06/the-comprehensive-partners-guide-to-associate-raises/
7/8/201637 minutes, 13 seconds
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Aric Press on Legal Journalism, Law Firm Rankings & His Career

The former editor-in-chief of The American Lawyer, Aric Press joins Josh Block and Casey Sullivan to discuss his career, law firm rankings, and what he's learned about the legal industry since becoming a law firm consultant. Brought to you by: Bloomberg Law www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes. itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-l…d1074067483?mt=2 Discussed in this episode: What is the Value of Law Firm Rankings? https://bol.bna.com/what-is-the-value-of-law-firm-rankings/ In Defense of Law Firm Rankings https://bol.bna.com/in-defense-of-law-firm-rankings/ ‘You’re Not My Family Doctor,’ Verizon GC Tells Law Firms https://bol.bna.com/youre-not-my-family-doctor-verizon-gc-tells-law-firms/ Law: ‘The Least Diverse Profession’ https://bol.bna.com/law-the-least-diverse-profession/ Aric Press: Law Firms Must Communicate with The Client https://bol.bna.com/aric-press-law-firms-must-communicate-with-the-client/
6/20/20161 hour, 10 minutes, 46 seconds
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Peter Lattman: The Exit Interview

Peter Lattman, formerly of The New York Times, joins Josh Block and Casey Sullivan to discuss covering the business of law at the Times and his stint as the first lead writer for The Wall Street Journal’s Law Blog. Lattman talks about his career, from his start as a big law associate at Kramer Levin, to his latest move, just last week, to Emerson Collective, the organization started by the widow of Steve Jobs, Laurene Powell Jobs. Brought to you by Bloomberg Law http://www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes. https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-law-business/id1074067483?mt=2 Follow us on Twitter: https://twitter.com/JoshBlockNYC https://twitter.com/Casey_BigLaw https://twitter.com/peterlattman
4/7/201643 minutes, 35 seconds
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K&L Gates and ‘The Shark Tank of Law Firms’

The American Lawyer’s Julie Triedman joins Josh Block and Casey Sullivan to discuss K&L Gates. Thirty partners recently left the law firm, but that was after an announcement that the firm would be receiving a $210 million contingency fee award. In light of the settlement, why are partners choosing to leave now, and what is the firm’s outspoken chairman, Peter Kalis saying about the departures? Brought to you by: Bloomberg Law http://www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes. https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/big-law-business/id1074067483?mt=2 Discussed in this episode: K&L Gates Departures Mount as 10 Partners Join Mayer Brown (Big Law Business)https://bol.bna.com/kl-gates-departures-mount-as-10-partners-join-mayer-brown/ At K&L Gates, Partners Exit and ‘the King’ is Silent (Big Law Business)https://bol.bna.com/at-kl-gates-partners-exit-and-the-king-is-silent/ K&L Gates Chair On Partner Exodus: Isn’t This to Be Expected? (Big Law Business)https://bol.bna.com/kl-gates-chair-on-partner-exodus-isnt-this-to-be-expected/ K&L Gates Partners Made for Exits Despite $210M Windfall (The American Lawyer)http://www.americanlawyer.com/id=1202751791381/KL-Gates-Partners-Made-for-Exits-Despite-210M-Windfall?mcode=0&curindex=0&curpage=ALL K&L Gates Losses Fueled By Clashes With Firm Management (Law 360)http://www.law360.com/articles/768581/k-l-gates-losses-fueled-by-clashes-with-firm-management
3/17/201626 minutes, 3 seconds
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Was Scalia Too Good for Big Law?

Josh Block and Casey Sullivan discuss deferred prosecution agreements in the Dewey & LeBoeuf criminal case, the end of Dickstein Shapiro, Justice Scalia's Big Law associate days, Richard Susskind's new book and op-ed video, and the one year anniversary of the launch of the Big Law Business website. Brought to you by: Bloomberg Law http://www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW Discussed in this episode: Ex-Dewey Client-Relations Manager Strikes Deal to Avoid Trial https://bol.bna.com/ex-dewey-client-relations-manager-strikes-deal-to-avoid-trial/ Former Dickstein Shapiro Chair Reflects on Demise, Blames Media https://bol.bna.com/former-dickstein-shapiro-chair-reflects-on-demise-blames-media/ Prominent SCOTUS Lawyer Reflects on the Death of Scalia https://bol.bna.com/prominent-scotus-lawyer-reflects-on-the-death-of-scalia/ Scalia’s Six-Year Stint as a Big Law Associate https://bol.bna.com/scalias-six-year-stint-as-a-big-law-associate/ Susskind: As Legal Work Decomposes Will Law Firms ‘Break Rank?’ https://bol.bna.com/as-legal-work-decomposes-will-law-firms-break-rank/
3/1/201622 minutes, 59 seconds
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When 22 Big Law Partners Head for the Exit Together

Josh Block and Casey Sullivan discuss the impending departure of 22 partners from Schiff Hardin, both Rudy Giuliani's move to Greenberg Traurig and the confirmation that the firm is in preliminary merger talks with a large British firm, Berwin Leighton Paisner. Will Dickstein Shapiro have a new merger partner? And what do the layoffs at Reed Smith mean for Big Law? Brought to you by: Bloomberg Law http://www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW Subscribe to the Big Law Business podcast on iTunes. Discussed in this episode: Exodus of 22 Partners Hits Schiff Hardin https://bol.bna.com/exodus-of-22-partners-hits-schiff-hardin/ Rudy Giuliani Video Series https://bol.bna.com/tag/video-series-giulianis-greenberg-traurig-move/ Greenberg Traurig is in Early Talks to Tie Up with London Law Firm https://bol.bna.com/greenberg-traurig-is-in-early-talks-to-tie-up-with-london-law-firm/ Dickstein Shapiro is in ‘Deep’ Talks with Blank Rome – Sources https://bol.bna.com/dickstein-shapiro-is-in-deep-talks-with-blank-rome/ Citi Law Firm Chair: Reed Smith Layoffs Won’t Be an Outlier https://bol.bna.com/citi-law-firm-chair-reed-smith-layoffs-wont-be-an-outlier/
2/9/201621 minutes, 52 seconds
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Does Big Law Have an Old Girl Network?

Josh Block and Casey Sullivan discuss the recent deferred prosecution agreement in the Dewey & LeBoeuf criminal case, the failed merger talks between Bryan Cave and Dickstein Shapiro, Kenyon & Kenyon and the IP firm blues, Sidley's growth in Boston, and a dinner party (at Per Se!) for female law firm leaders. (CORRECTION: In this podcast we say that Dewey’s former chair Steve Davis accepted a plea deal. In fact, the deal was a deferred prosecution agreement.) Brought to you by: Bloomberg Law http://www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW
1/20/201616 minutes, 23 seconds
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The Biggest Business of Law Stories of 2015

In this teaser episode of the Big Law Business podcast, Josh Block and Casey Sullivan discuss the biggest business of law stories of 2015; the extreme growth of Dentons, and the criminal trial of three former Dewey & LeBoeuf executives for their role in the firm's collapse. Brought to you by: Bloomberg Law http://www.bna.com/bloomberglaw?promocode=BLBBLAW
1/3/201615 minutes, 22 seconds